$7.3 million for  imported rice

Between January 1 and March 30, 2019, 140,543 quintals of piled rice and 263,538 quintals of the US husked grain will enter the country.

Importadora Ricamar, Supermarkets Xtra and Super Centro El Fuerte acquired the largest amount of rice that will enter the country without paying import duty as agreed in the trade promotion treaty (TPC) between Panama and the United States (EU).

Importadora Ricamar bought 22,500,500 quintals, and Supermercados Xtra and El Fuerte acquired 18,000 and 15,300, respectively.

The price of the quintal was paid at $ 25.15 and must enter the country between January 1 and March 31 of next year, according to a report on the results of the National Stock Exchange, SA (Baisa).

Through Baisa, 263 thousand 538 quintals of paddy rice were also negotiated, for a value of $3.8 million.

The purchase of the kernel in husk was taken over by Coclé’s Grain Center. The company of Grupo Calesa acquired 24 batches of 1,800 quintals, for a total of 43 thousand 200 quintals of paddy rice.

The price of the quintal in shell was negotiated at $ 14.60 and must enter the country from January 1 to March 31, 2019.

Hermanos Palacios bought 27 thousand quintals of paddy rice for $394,200, Agrosilos bought another 25,200 quintals, for $367,920 dollars; and Rice Industry of Chiriquí negotiated 23,400 quintals at a cost of $341,640.
In the Baisa post, $7.3 million were negotiated between the quotas of paddy and shell rice of the TPC between Panama and the US.

The rice imported from the US will join the local crops and the imports of the Agricultural Marketing Institute (IMA) from Guyana.

From the Caribbean territory will enter the country 200.000 quintals of rice from the second week of December to the second week of March, said Raúl Ávila , IMA’s general director.

"It needs to be imported because the rice can take 45 days before being harvested" the official explained.

Local cultivation

In the country 64,000 hectares of rice are cultivated during the agricultural cycle 2018-2019, which began in June and ends in April.

At this time, the peak harvest moment is recorded in the eastern region of the country, where 143 farmers grow 21,000 hectares of rice, with an average production of 2.2 million quintals.

The plans indicate that in Panama East and Darién, 700,000 bushels of grain are to be harvested between December and January.

The quintal of wet and dirty rice is paid to the producer at $24.50 put into the mill.

In this commercial relationship, the agro-industrial producers buy the quintal of the wet kernel in shell at $17, while the State subsidizes $ 7.50 remaining so that the price to the consumer, of the first rice, is set at 40 cents per pound.