Govt to embed microchips in rice sacks to prevent corruption

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BANGKOK, July 17 – Commerce Ministry will embed microchips in rice sacks to prevent corruption, according to Deputy Prime Minister/Commerce Minister Niwatthamrong Boonsongpaisan.

Mr Niwatthamrong said rice pledging is the main task to be dealt with, for corruption has occurred.

A real-time system to check rice stockpiles and radio-frequency identification (RFID) microchip embedding at rice sacks in mills are warehouses participating in the rice pledging scheme will be set up to prevent more corruption. The minister said the Public Warehouse Organization and Marketing Organization for Farmers have been assigned to conduct a feasibility study and an investment budget by the end of next month.

The rice export figure and outlook for the second half of this year will be reviewed this month, he added.

Meanwhile, Deputy Commerce Minister Yanyong Puangrat said he had ordered Internal Trade Department to set up a centre to control and monitor the standard and quality of Thai rice as well as take rice report problems. It will be intergrated with other agencies such as the Commerce Ministry’s laboratory to build confidence among investors and improve Thai rice quality. Complaints can be filed at Hotline No.1569.

Mr Yanyong added the ministry will allow the prices of consumer goods to change in accord with market mechanism, but will look after some goods which fluctuate according to season. The Commerce Ministry will find ways to encourage more consumption among the public, he added.