Demand for local white rice in Kelantan up 50 per cent
PASIR MAS - The demand for local white rice in Kelantan has increased by almost 50 per cent following the increase in the price of imported rice since last week.
Kelantan State Farmers Organisation (PPN) board chairman Datuk Aimi Jusoh said the spike in demand was also driven by panic buying and due to its better quality which is also chemical-free.
"For the past 20 years, the demand for local rice had been consistent at the same level every year, but the surge in demand occurred by almost 50 per cent since the price of imported rice went up.
"Previously, the people of Kelantan preferred imported rice from Thailand because they are easily available at the Kelantan border," he told a press conference on the issue of local white rice at Kangkong Farmers’ Organisation Area (PPK) here today, which was also attended by Kelantan Padi and Rice Regulation director Mohamed Fadhli Abdul Azid.
Elaborating, Aimi who is also Kangkong PPK board chairman, said the local white rice produced is also sold at a much cheaper price below the government-controlled price, at RM13 for five kilogrammes (kg) and RM25.50 for 10 kg.
"There are 34 PPK areas throughout Kelantan with 2,400 hectares of padi fields which are able to supply 90,000 tonnes of rice per season, so we are confident that the demand can be met without any problems," he said.
Meanwhile, Mohamed Fadhli said the supply of local white rice is also believed to be sufficient to meet the demand throughout the monsoon season because the second rice season for 2023 will be harvested at the end of this month.
"Five local white rice supply and distribution companies have been appointed including Kangkong PPK, to ensure sufficient supply of 200 tonnes of rice per month, thus solving the issue of lack of carbohydrate resources in the state," he said. - BERNAMA