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The future of global rice

04 December 2023

The global rice industry meets today under the most challenging circumstances. While world rice inventories are at sufficient levels to meet demand, due to export bans, logistics disruptions, climate change, and regional conflicts, rice prices continue to rise and have denied the world’s poor access to this basic staple. But at no other time in our history has agriculture technology also managed to develop to such a level that can drive higher productivity and rural incomes to benefit the consuming public and farmers alike. Against this backdrop, we continue to face the following challenges and must address them head-on: 1. Rising global populations and their impact on land and water resources. As population increases, continuing urbanization will exact its toll on agricultural lands and water sources. For this reason, greater conservation of water and soil resources must be given preeminent importance and funding by governments. Government cannot do this alone but must incentivize the private sector to work on these through cost-sharing partnerships. Banks can be allowed to enroll projects like soil conservation, impounding, and drip irrigation, as agri-agra law compliant. For the government, land and water use regulations must also promote a balance that takes into account the realities of the use and ownership of these vital resources through more equitable tenurial arrangements. This is not a “zero-sum” game: A balance can be struck by incentivizing the private sector to develop the areas around our most productive land and water resources. As we do so, we must push ourselves to be more productive today by investing in better planting techniques, postharvest, and logistics systems.2. Climate change. Rice is highly sensitive to climate conditions and climate change is expected to significantly impact on future production. In the Philippines, we suffer through more than 20 tropical cyclones a year which the Asian Development Bank has said, registers more than $1 billion in annual damages. El Niño in 2024 will also affect India, Pakistan, Thailand, and Vietnam. Together, these four countries make up 30 percent of global rice sales. With these realities, we must use the vast array of technologies available to manage risks and costs. We must use precision agriculture, digital agronomy, weather intelligence, better data, as well as better financial and insurance instruments. Without better risk mitigation products in public and private finance, funds will not flow into agriculture and will keep the sector “high risk.” In the Philippines, banks The future of global rice

Source : msn