Our Markets

Rice is a major food staple vital for the nutrition of much of the population in Asia, as well as in Latin America and the Caribbean and in Africa. It is central to the food security of over half the world population, not to mention to the culture of many communities. Rice is therefore considered a “strategic” commodity in many countries and is, consequently, subject to a wide range of government controls and interventions.

The increasing importance of Africa and a number of Asian countries as destinations of rice flows has sustained a large increase in the trade of lower quality rice. The growing importance of aromatic rice varieties in global trade reflects brisk imports to the European Union (mainly of Basmati rice, imported under preferential access conditions), the United States, Canada and Australia. However, it can also be associated with large deliveries of Hom Mali rice (a fragrant variety from Thailand), to countries in Africa, particularly Ivory Coast, Cameroon, Ghana and Senegal, albeit with a high percentage of brokens. On the other hand, high degrees of protection in Japonica rice markets such as Japan, the Republic of Korea, the European Union and Turkey have constrained the opportunities for expansion of the Japonica rice trade. Tariff escalation, whereby the more processed forms of a commodity are assigned higher tariff rates, has favoured a strong expansion of trade in paddy, principally to Latin America and the Caribbean.

 
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