MIRI: Two tonnes of subsidised Super Tempatan 15 (ST15) rice was sold in two days at a supermarket here, indicating the high demand for this particular grade.
This was discovered during a survey conducted by the Agriculture and Agro-based Industry Ministry’s Padi and Rice Regulatory Division recently.
The division’s Miri branch head Mohd Nornizam Ramli said the supermarket located in a densely populated housing area was supplied with two tonnes of the rice last Saturday.
“When we went to the supermarket on Monday, we found it was sold out,” he said.
Demand for the rice had been increasing in Miri and Bintulu from last month and the 400 tonnes of ST15 rice supplied to the two areas a week was not enough, he added.
Mohd Nornizam said the retail outlets ran out of the rice, sold at RM18 for a 10kg pack, because it was also sought after by food and restaurant operators who bought it in bulk.
Another factor was that consumers were buying huge quantities of the rice after the state announced that a coupon system under the People’s Rice Subsidy Programme (Subur) would be enforced from Dec 1, he said.
Under the Subur initiative, the poor and hardcore poor, including natives and bumiputras of Sabah and Sarawak, will be given coupons to exchange for ST15 rice.
Those in the hardcore poor group will be given RM24 in coupons which they can exchange for a 10kg sack of the rice.
They will be given three coupons a month, enabling them to have 30kg of free rice during the period. — Bernama
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