Paddy prices fall to the lowest in 6 months

By Ngoc Tai   February 25, 2024 | 01:46 am PT
Paddy prices fall to the lowest in 6 months
Farmers in Thap Muoi District, Dong Thap Province harvest the 2024 winter-spring paddy. Photo by VnExpress/Ngoc Tai 
Prices of paddy in the Mekong Delta have decreased by VND2,000 (US$0.08) to VND7,500-8,500 per kilogram, the lowest in the past six months.

Nguyen Van Dong, a farmer in Thap Muoi District of Dong Thap Province, is preparing to harvest nearly one hectare of winter-spring paddy.

Last month, traders placed a deposit to buy paddy from him for VND9,100 per kilogram, but now they only agree to pay VND8,300 per kilogram.

Not far from Dong’s paddy field, Mai Van Tuan has just sold his paddy to traders for VND7,500 per kilogram, down nearly VND2,000 compared to one week before.

Prices have continuously dropped over the past week, causing paddy growers like Tuan to lose nearly VND20 million per hectare.

Paddy prices in other southern provinces such as An Giang and Kien Giang have also decreased.

Currently, the Mekong provinces are in the winter-spring paddy harvest with an area of some 1.4 million hectares, and an average yield of 7.2 tons per hectare.

According to Nguyen Van Don, director of Viet Hung Company, a rice exporter in Tien Giang, countries which import Vietnamese rice are buying in moderation and have not yet finalized new contracts.

Without new export contracts and due to their limited capital, Vietnamese firms are hesitant to purchase paddy to process for export.

However, he said the paddy prices of VND7,500-8,500 per kilogram have hit the bottom and it is difficult for them to drop further, because India has maintained rice export restrictions after the election, so the global supply is not abundant.

This year’s winter-spring crop, paddy growers are still profitable due to high prices maintained earlier, an average of VND25-30 million per hectare, up 40-50% against last year.

According to the Vietnam Food Association, the price of export rice grade 5% was $609 per ton on Feb. 22, down $19 against the previous day; and Thai rice of the same grade was $611 per ton, down $3.

Compared to the peak export price in early 2024, the current price is down $50 per ton.

Last year, Vietnam’s rice exports stood at 8.13 million tons totaling $4.7 billion, a record level for its rice industry.

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