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Monday, 06 August 2012

Cambodian Center for Study and Development in Agriculture (CEDAC), a Cambodian agricultural organisation, will collect US$20 million from the Kingdom’s farmers through 2022 in an attempt to accumulate capital for organic rice production.

The funds will be collected without a collaborating partner or foreign donors, a move that is hoped will build unity and confidence among the Kingdom’s farming community, CEDAC President Yang Saing Koma said.

“We want to show that the farmers can combine capital, that they can do this. But it’s not easy. It needs time. Nothing like this has existed before. We think we can do it,” he said. Organic farming practices are taking hold in many parts of the county, farmers reported. CEDAC techniques have become increasingly prevalent as a means to make a living.

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Thursday, 02 August 2012

Kampot pepper producer Anna Him had been growing the prized spice for about eight years before she decided to take the plunge and export it herself two years ago.
In 2010 Kampot’s pepper was given protected geographical indication status (GI), a similar certification that gives Greece the right to market its cheese as ‘feta’ and the Champagne region in France the rights to call their sparkling wine ‘champagne’.

Demand for Cambodia’s unique commodity surged and for the first time Kampot’s pepper producers were preparing export orders for peppercorns before they had been harvested.

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Tuesday, 31 July 2012

Cashew nut exports increased more than 10-fold, to 4,231 tonnes, in the first half of the year compared to the same period in 2011 when Cambodia exported 392 tonnes, according to data released by the Ministry of Commerce.

The price of the cashew nuts dropped about US$450 from $1,137 per tonne in 2011, to $685 per tonne for 2012. This year’s revenues were $2,898,806 compared to last year’s of $444,669.

Kong Putheara, the director of the Statistics and Information Department, said that cashew nuts grown in Cambodia were absorbed by the Vietnamese market for processing for export or to return to Cambodia.

The huge increase in exports indicates the large demand for Cambodian agricultural products remained high, while some other products were affected by the euro zone debt crisis, he said.

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Thursday, 19 July 2012

Cambodia will push to finalise a rice-exporting bloc with four other regional countries by the end of the year in a bid to become the world’s “food basket”, according to the Ministry Of Commerce.

The group of countries including Cambodia, Vietnam, Thailand, Laos and Myanmar – and known as the Association of Milled Rice Exporting Countries – would also look to become a counterbalance to Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC).

The concept of the association had been put forward by Prime Minister Hun Sen and Thailand’s ousted Prime Minister Thakshin Shinawatra about five years ago. “The five countries will be the world’s food supplier – what we could call the food basket of the world,” said Minister of Commerce Cham Prasidh. “We would be able to supply the whole world. We would not increase prices but try to find a way to facilitate trade with [other countries].”

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Tuesday, 17 July 2012

When London-based real estate investor Sanjay Dhir heard about Cambodia from his Indian partner Manoj Varma, he took a trip here in October 2010 and stopped by the roadside to meet the operators of a portable rice mill.

He knew then that Cambodia was ready for new rice mills. After working with his partners for the last year and a half, Long Grain Co Ltd announced the deal last week for a $20 million investment in a new rice mill in the Oddong district, about 40 kilometres from Phnom Penh. “When you have been through many crises in various countries, trends and fashion changes, you learn one thing: people have got to eat,” Dhir said.

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