Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Red corn prices tumble as growers switch to cassava

Red corn prices tumble as growers switch to cassava

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
Battambang provincial Department of Commerce director Kim Hout said about 80 per cent of the province’s red corn is exported by traders to Thailand. Heng Chivoan

Red corn prices tumble as growers switch to cassava

The wholesale price of fresh red corn in northwestern Battambang province dipped more than seven per cent from the year-ago period as this year’s first harvest reached 30 per cent completion, provincial Department of Commerce director Kim Hout said.

Red corn is harvested twice a year between late June and August and then again between late October and February.

Hout told The Post on Monday that the crop’s price depends on fluctuations in the Thai market, where most local output ends up.

Quoting prices in the Thai currency, he said fresh red corn currently nets 3,800 baht ($121) per tonne, down from 4,100 baht during the same time last year. He noted that the price only applies during the year’s first harvest.

The price during the second harvest is typically higher.

Hout said about 80 per cent of Battambang’s red corn is exported by traders to Thailand, while the balance is supplied to local animal feed company CP Cambodia Co Ltd, a subsidiary of Thai conglomerate Charoen Pokphand Group (CP Group).

Provincial Department of Agriculture director Chhim Vachira said the cultivation area of red corn in the province declined sharply this year compared to previous years as farmers opted to plant cassava instead.

On the other hand, Battambang’s agricultural sector has not registered a significant decline this year, he said.

“The provincial Department of Agriculture is currently working to diversify agriculture and boost the province’s capability to provide food and other agricultural products, including agro-industrial crops, vegetables and aquaculture products,” Vachira said.

He noted that overall agricultural production in the province had expanded this year compared to last year.

Chan Muoy, the owner of a silo storage facility and collection point in Battambang province’s northwestern Sampov Loun district, attributed the marginal decline in red corn price in part to Covid-19 concerns.

As more farmers abandon the crop in favour of cassava, she said, this year’s yield is expected to undershoot last year’s level.

She said Monday’s per-tonne price was 3,900 baht on average for fresh red corn on the cob and 8,000 baht for dried kernels.

Phen Noeut, a red corn and potato farmer in the same district, said market and weather concerns have led him to considerably scale back red corn cultivation this year.

He said he planted only 1ha of red corn this year, down from last year’s 6ha. He switched the remaining land to cassava. “I figured that growing cassava could be more productive than red corn.”

According to the Battambang provincial Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries figures, red corn will be grown on more than 43,000ha of land in the province this year, down from more than 73,000 ha last year.

One hectare of red corn will produce an average of 2.83 tonnes this year, the department estimated.

MOST VIEWED

  • Hong Kong firm done buying Coke Cambodia

    Swire Coca-Cola Ltd, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Hong Kong-listed Swire Pacific Ltd, on November 25 announced that it had completed the acquisition of The Coca-Cola Co’s bottling business in Cambodia, as part of its ambitions to expand into the Southeast Asian market. Swire Coca-Cola affirmed

  • Cambodia's Bokator now officially in World Heritage List

    UNESCO has officially inscribed Cambodia’s “Kun Lbokator”, commonly known as Bokator, on the World Heritage List, according to Minister of Culture and Fine Arts Phoeurng Sackona in her brief report to Prime Minister Hun Sen on the night of November 29. Her report, which was

  • NagaWorld union leader arrested at airport after Australia trip

    Chhim Sithar, head of the Labour Rights Supported Union of Khmer Employees at NagaWorld integrated casino resort, was arrested on November 26 at Phnom Penh International Airport and placed in pre-trial detention after returning from a 12-day trip to Australia. Phnom Penh Municipal Court Investigating Judge

  • Takeo hand-woven silk items provide local high-quality alternative to imports

    After graduating from university and beginning her career as a civil servant at the the Ministry of Economy and Finance, Khieu Sina found time to establish a business that aligns with her true passion – quality hand-woven Khmer goods. Her product line, known as Banteay Srei,

  • Sub-Decree approves $30M for mine clearance

    The Cambodian government established the ‘Mine-Free Cambodia 2025 Foundation’, and released an initial budget of $30 million. Based on the progress of the foundation in 2023, 2024 and 2025, more funds will be added from the national budget and other sources. In a sub-decree signed by Prime Minister Hun Sen

  • Two senior GDP officials defect to CPP

    Two senior officials of the Grassroots Democratic Party (GDP) have asked to join the Cambodian People’s Party (CPP), after apparently failing to forge a political alliance in the run-up to the 2023 general election. Yang Saing Koma, chairman of the GDP board, and Lek Sothear,