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Apr 16, 2008

Rice millers hoarding rice, say wholesalers

Sun2surf - Rice wholesalers claim some millers are hoarding the grain or have jacked up the prices, resulting in wholesale price of local rice almost 40% higher than imported rice.

Oriental Daily News reported today local white rice (with 5% broken rice), which was supplied by millers at RM80 to RM82 per 50kg bag last month, has gone up to RM110 to RM115 per 50kg bag now.

Similarly, local white rice with 10% broken rice has gone up from RM75 to RM78 to RM105 to RM110 per 50kg bag.

Despite the hike in price, some millers have stopped taking orders, resulting in many wholesalers unable to get their supply.

"Some millers have switched off their handphones to avoid us. They are waiting for the next wave of price increase before releasing their stock," said a wholesaler, who believed the price of white rice will go up in the near future.

White rice mixed with 5% to 10% broken rice is not a controlled item.

A Malaysian Rice Wholesalers Association spokesman said some millers have taken advantage of the global hike in prices of rice to also jack up the price of local white rice which is mixed with 5% or 10% broken rice, especially in the last two weeks.

The spokesman said the wholesale price of local white rice, which has exceeded RM100 per 50kg bag, is about RM30 more than the imported variety.

This is because Padiberas Nasional, the sole licenced rice importer, has not increased the prices of rice despite the global rice price hikes lately.more...


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