Seventy-three farming cooperatives in 13 provinces are expected to be able to accept pledges of two million tonnes of paddy from farmers worth about 23 billion baht, said agriculture inspector-general Prinya Pergsombat on Monday.
Prinya made the above remark after having met representatives of the farming cooperatives of the North and the Northeat about the credit extension programme to delay the sale of rice by farmers in order to stall the rice price from steadily falling if all the rice are sold simultaneously.
Meanwhile, many farmers have started drying up their newly-harvested paddy in the sun to reduce humidity before the grains are to be pledged with the government in return for credits from the Bank of Agriculture and Agricultural Cooperatives amounting to 90 percent of the market price.
Farmers who cannot afford to wait to join the programme because they need cash fast have to sell their crops to rice millers at between 5,500-6,000 baht per tonne for Hom Mali grains.
Some farmers in Prompiram district of Phitsanuloke said they cannot sell or pledge all their crops because they have to keep some of the grains for the next cultivation. One farmer said he had bought rice seeds worth about 600 baht per sack for the next cultivation.
A rice miller in Phichit’s Tab Klor district said he bought paddy from farmers in Tab Klor at a price 300-500 baht/tonne higher than that offered by the other millers to make pack rice for sale at 260 bath for a pack of 15 kgs.