Government to offload degraded rice in stockpile to save spending on keeping them in warehouses

The Commerce Ministry is accelerating the sale of degraded rice from the stockpile at a loss in order to ease the financial burden of keeping the grains in warehouses estimated at about 17 million baht a day.

The ministry is staging an auction of 1.03 million tonnes of degraded rice to be processed into bio fuel in accordance with the policy of the Rice Policy Committee, said Mrs Duangporn Rodpayat, director-general of Foreign Trade Department.

Earlier, 1.6 million tonnes of degraded rice were auctioned off to animal feed industry at about seven billion baht or 4,000 baht per tonne compared to the 24,000 baht/tonne price paid by the government under the rice pledging scheme initiated by the former Pheu Thai-led government under Ms Yingluck Shinawatra’s premiership.

An informed source in the rice trade said that the government was losing about 19,000 for every tonne of degraded rice sold for industrial use. If 12 million tonnes of degraded rice in stockpile are sold out, the government will sustain a staggering loss of about 150 billion baht, the source added.