CAMBODIA'S corn exports jumped 38 percent over the first two months of 2011 compared to the same period last year, according to the General Directorate of Camcontrol, which is a department of the Commerce Ministry.
In January and February 6,694 tonnes of corn was shipped from the Kingdom, compared to 4,481 tonnes in the same period last year.
The corn exports fetched about US$280,000 over the first quarter, an increase of $60,000 year-over-year, with most of the product going to Thailand and Taiwan.
“Exports are on the rise because domestic corn production is doing well this year, and the prices are also high,” said Khuon Savuth, director of Camcontrol.
“Growth in corn production and the higher price will be able to help farmers have a better standard of living,” he said.
Chea Kea, president of PBCK Development, which exports farming produce to Thailand, said the company has just started a new operation to buy corn from farmers in Pailin province this year. He has collected roughly 10,000 tonnes of corn so far, he said.
PBCK so far this year has exported approximately 6,000 tonnes of corn and plans to export about another 3,000 tonnes more soon, Chea Kea said.
“Corn output this year increased more than last year and the price is getting more expensive,” Chea Kea said. “One tonne of corn is about $300 higher than last year,” or around 40 percent higher, he said.
He added that the company does not limit buying, and this year PCBK expects to collect around 50,000 tonnes of corn.
Chhorn Sarim, a corn farmer in Pailin province, hopes to capitalise on the trend. Because many farmers right now are growing cassava, she expects the high demand for corn to give her an advantage come harvest time, she said.
“Thus, corn will get an even higher price then,” she said.