The price per kilogram of cassava exports from Cambodia has this year increased mainly due to rising demand from neighbouring Thailand, Pang Vannaseth, director of Banteay Meanchey’s agriculture department, said yesterday.
Mr Vannaseth said the price increase is for both fresh and dried cassava.
“Now our farmers are both harvesting and growing new cassava and the current price is 270 riels ($0.069) per kilo in the average, compared to 180 riels ($0.045) last year for the fresh cassava as the current dried cassava is 735 riels ($0.19), compared to 410 riels last year.
“The demand from Thailand has seen an increase and there are some Chinese companies that are also buying cassava from us. The open market for buyers contributes to the price increase.
“The price of cassava will remain high for a long time because Thailand has started to scale down cassava plantation due to the small margin of profit realised from the plantations. They also have to process it to in order to generate better profit,” Mr Vannaseth said.
The cassava farm in Banteay Meanchey covers 88,000 hectares and will reach a total of 110,000 hectares altogether, according to Mr Vannaseth.
Poeung Tryda, director of Preah Vihear provincial agriculture department, said with the good price the farmers in need of cash are harvesting the product.
“The prices here are from 270 ($0.069) to 380 riels ($0.094) for fresh cassava, based on the size, starch quality, and location and the dried ones are from 700 ($0.17) to 800 riels ($0.20) per kilo. The merchants from Kampong Cham and Kampong Thom have been collecting cassava from our farmers.
“In the past, about 95 percent of our cassava were exported to Vietnam and the remaining to Thailand, but this year there is the cassava factory in Kratie’s Chitr Borie collecting fresh cassava, and that has contributed to the price increase,” Mr Tryda said, adding that the cassava farm in the province covers 20,000 hectares.
Som Yin, president of Malai Trading, a company purchasing cassava in Malai district, said this year fresh cassava is more expensive than last year, with a kilo sold at 1.20 or 1.50 baht only (about 180 riel or $0.045); however, this month his company is buying a kilo at 2.35 baht (280 riels or $0.069).