Two price increase notices that the grain companies in Hunan and Jiangxi provinces issued in October have been circulating on the Internet. A notice from Jiangxi province stated that COVID 19 and natural disasters this year affected several major grain producing areas across the country Some areas had rain for two consecutive months prior to the harvest season, so overall rice production dropped by about 30 percent compared to previous years. The notice predicted that the minimum increase per ton of rice would be between 200 and 500 yuan (US$30-75). A notice from a grain company in Hunan province stated that the reduced grain production output has resulted in the price being highly competitive. Therefore, the purchase price of the rice will be based on the market rate on the day of the purchase.
Due to flooding in dozens of provinces across the country, along with pest infestation, droughts, and hail this year, China has seen much lower grain production compared to prior years. The grain that the state-owned grain warehouse received was only two-thirds of last year’s level. The official CCTV reported that in previous years farmers would go to the market to sell their grain, but this year the grain merchants have been visiting the farmers homes to buy grain. The price for corn even reached 2600 yuan (US$389) per ton, the highest in the last four years.
According to China’s agricultural commodity futures website, China recently granted a rice import license to 43 rice companies in Myanmar. The reason it switched from its major rice importing countries such as India, Vietnam and Thailand this year was because these countries have either refused to sell, have restricted grain exports, or have increased the price.
Source: Aboluowang, October 31, 2020