Salt production in 2012 will most likely decline as a result of the heavy rains and flooding that hit Cambodia throughout September and October this year, industry insiders say.
The 90,000-tonne target was unlikely to be met because early-season salt output was affected by a wetter-than-expected rainy season, Cambodian Salt Production Association president Ly Seng said.
The salt-harvesting season is typically January to March, although early collection may begin in the late months of the prior year. But that collection, and the crop output overall, were hurt by the worst floods in a decade. “We are really worried by the rain, because it can cause a loss of the salt crop next year,” Ly Seng said this week.
Late collection could cause a decline of 20 to 30 per cent from the 100,000 tonnes collected in 2011, he said.
Salt farmers echoed Ly Seng’s concern. Pao Sun, of Kampot province, said he could lose as much as 50 per cent of the 1,000 tonnes in output he had in 2011.
He said he worried that heavy rain and floods faced by other salt-producing countries, such as Vietnam, would weigh on Cambodia’s supplies.
The Kingdom’s salt crop is kept in-country for domestic use. Imports are used to meet the remaining demand.