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Thai Ministry of Commerce mulls over management measures and development plans for cassava in 2019/2020

May 14, 2019


Abstract : The Department of Foreign Trade (DFT) of the Thai Ministry of Commerce (MOC) will invite professional organizations in cassava industry, to attend meetings to discuss and monitor the cassava production and trade, said Adul Chotinisakorn, director general of DFT.

InfoQuest, (May 13, 3019) -- The Department of Foreign Trade (DFT) of the Thai Ministry of Commerce (MOC) will invite professional organizations in cassava industry, including Thai Tapioca Trade Association, Thai Tapioca Starch Association, Thai Tapioca Products Factory Association and North Eastern Tapioca Trade Association, to attend meetings to discuss and monitor the cassava production and trade, said Adul Chotinisakorn, director general of DFT. This action aims to collect relevant information and facts as basis for its cassava production management measures for 2019/2020 and long-term development plans for Thailand's cassava industry. In particular, the information collected will be submitted to the Cassava Management and Policy Committee, and used as reference for their cassava production management measures for 2019/2020, such as using cassava as raw material in bio-plastic industry.

In terms of cassava production and sales, the cassava amount on the market in 2018/2019 reached 28.46 million tons, accounting for 90.2 percent of the total, and the remaining 9.8 percent or about 3.09 million tons is expected to be put into the market in phases by late September 2019. These figures showed that allied departments have succeeded in the cassava management by pegging cassava price at a relatively high level, thereby ensuring cassava farmers a better scenario of making a profit than breaking even.

With regards to Cassava Mosaic Disease (CMD), Thailand has adopted efficient management and spread prevention methods, which enables Thailand to continuously produce, process and export cassava products. This positive trend has filled both buyers and importers with more confidence in Thailand's cassava production, thus giving rise to a continuous increase in Thailand's total cassava exports. In addition, innovative cassava products, either edible or non-edible, are becoming more and more popular.

"Even though cassava harvest season is coming to an end soon, the DFT advises farmers not hurry to dig out the tender cassava roots, because the low starch content may bring down the price. So, farmers should wait until the starch content is high enough, and then be offered a better price," Mr. Adul said.

Moreover, he also stressed that farmers should prepare enough cassava stems for the next season, warning a likely shortage of CMD-free cassava stems in Southeast Asia in the next planting season. As a result, Thailand will see a surge in demand for CMD-free cassava stems. Therefore, farmers are well advised to control the sales of cassava stems and stock abundant stems to meet this demand. Meanwhile, they should attach importance to harvesting cassava tubers through planting, instead of selling cassava stems that are of less economic value.

Source: InfoQuest, by Phana/Kasamarporn/Tanawat, translated by Xinhua Silk Road

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