PETALING JAYA: There is sufficient white rice in the country, says Padiberas Nasional Berhad (Bernas).
"In managing the supply of imported rice, Bernas has channelled (up to) 630,000 tonnes (of white rice) from January to August, an increase of 38% from the average monthly (supply) for the last five years.
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"This means supply is more than enough, without the government having to use its buffer stocks," it said in a statement on Thursday (Sept 28) to address public concerns over local white rice supplies.
It noted that the demand for white rice was rising owing to the difference in price with imported rice.
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The statement said the increase was at the consumer, supplier and food industry player levels.
It added that Bernas, in its role as a "buyer of last resort", had an average local rice market share of about 10%, with the rest handled by private producers.
It also stressed its commitment to and support for all intervention programmes introduced by the Agriculture and Food Security Ministry to ensure sufficient local rice supply.