The depletion of soils in Los Santos is leading producers to Darien, where rice cultivation has increased by 35% and more than 190 thousand hectares are now dedicated to raising livestock.
At the close of the 2015-16 crop year in the province of Darien almost 5,000 hectares were planted with rice and 192,000 hectares dedicated to cattle, two activities that until recently used to be concentrated in the province of Los Santos.In the case of rice, the increase is 35% from the agricultural year 2012-2013. In Darien,"... their soil moisture, land availability and proximity to the capital city have combined to the benefit of the productive sector."
The increase in 5,800 hectares in the amount of land planted with rice in 2015 will lead to an increase in local production which will reduce imports required to complete supply of the domestic market by almost 50%.
An article on Laestrella.com.pa reports that Jorge Arango, Minister of Agricultural development, said that "... the country has increased domestic production of rice this year, therefore imports of this grain will be reduced ' by nearly half 'what was imported in previous years. "
Despite the fact that grain imports continues to increase, an agreement has been made to raise the price per hundredweight of rice paid by industrial producers to $24.5.
In their enthusiasm to protect domestic agricultural production, the Ministry of Agricultural Development has agreed with producers to increase the price paid per hundredweight of rice produced to $24.50.
Citing the old concepts of food sovereignty, protection is being given to the inefficient production of the few while the consumption capacity of the poorest is punished.
As expected, the government of Luis Guillermo Solís has decided to apply the safeguard measure requested by rice farmers, increasing the tax paid on imports of milled rice from 35% to 62%, which in practice only applies to rice bought in Argentina and Uruguay.
In Honduras the Rice Producers Association is negotiating with the government conditions for establishing a reference price and proposing fixing at $18.65 per hundredweight.
Taken from ReporteArroz.com:
New Tender by Iraq leaves Latin America in suspense .
The Iraqi state-owned grain company issued on Monday an international tender to buy at least 30,000 tons of rice, as stated by the Ministry of Commerce. The closing date of the tender is December 22 and offers must remain valid until December 26. The rice requested could come from the United States, Uruguay, Argentina, Vietnam, Brazil or Thailand.
Instead of liberalizing the price of grain from 2015, the government is considering implementing a gradual deregulation scheme.
In order for the local price of rice to approach the international price, the Costa Rican authorities will substitute, in the first weeks of next year, the decree liberalizing the price of rice and look for "... Another decree which contains a process that allows the price of rice to reach similar (international) levels . "
The quotas for duty free export of beef, rice and tuna negotiated in the Agreement with the European Union are not being exploited to the fullest extent by local producers.
Lack of certification by the meat processing plants for export, the crisis in the agricultural sector and the absence of incentives to produce exportable foods are some of the factors which, in the opinion of producers, are preventing the country from taking advantage of the tariff benefits granted to country under the Economic Association Agreement (AA).
The subsidy of $190 million paid by consumers "will not primarily go to producers but to large industrial companies which process domestic crops and who are, at the same time, importers."
In his blog on Elfinancierocr.com, Juan Carlos Hidalgo discusses the singular phenomenon that occurs in Costa Rica, where the rice policy initially intended to protect small rice producers, has become an unjust wealth transfer mechanism between sectors of society.
Calculations by associations of rice farmers in Panama indicate that the total hectares planted this year is less than 40,000, well below the 76,000 that was grown between 1999 and 2001.
Taken from Reportearroz.com:
South Korea: Farmers protest against measures for market liberalization.
Thousands of farmers, both in agriculture and livestock sectors, took to the streets in Seoul to oppose the decisions made by the South Korean state to allow the entry of imports of rice from next year and establish an agreement with China, the FTA.
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