Minister of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries Dith Tina has unveiled plans to boost the use of high-quality rice seeds.
The new varieties, he said, would give higher yields using fewer seeds, grow quickly and be resistant to pests and disease.
The quality of the milled rice they produce, he added, is such that they would demand higher prices on the market.
Tina was speaking at an October 31 consultative meeting on the work of rice seed production with experts and representatives of the Cambodia Rice Federation (CRF).
Also in attendance were specialists from the ministry and provincial agriculture departments, and Hun Lak, CRF chairman and general-director of Mekong Oryza Trading Co Ltd.
Lak supported the minister’s idea of producing genetically pure rice seeds to supply the Kingdom’sfarmers.
“The use of pure rice seeds will ensure the purity of milled rice for markets at home and abroad,” he said.
Tina encouraged the participation of all stakeholders, including the private sector, to ensure that the pure rice seeds will find a market.
He asked that specialists study the international market and boost production according to market demand.
Lak asked that the minister facilitate production chains that would reduce the expenses of farmers, thus increasing their income.
A CRF report said that in the first nine months of the year, exports of unmilled and milled rice had generated a total of $850.4 million.
In the same period, 449,325 tonnes of rice were exported to 55 destinations, with nine countries accounting for more than 82 per cent of Cambodia’s rice exports. China accounted for 44.09 per cent, followed by France, with 14.83 per cent. Malaysia, the Netherland, Italy and Gabon were the next most important rice markets for the Kingdom.