Rice packers assure no price hike despite higher production cost
The Thai Rice Packers Association has denied reports of price increases for packaged rice of up to 30 baht for a 5-kilogram package.
Somkiat Makcayathorn, the association’s honorary president, said on Thursday that there would be no price hike despite a 30 per cent rise in the production cost involving transportation, packaging and raw material.
“Reports that the rice packers are going to raise the prices are inaccurate,” he said.
Somkiat, who also serves as chief executive officer at major packaged-rice producer Patum Rice Mill and Granary Plc, explained that the rice packers would only cut the offered discount, resulting in higher retail prices, which would still be lower than the suggested prices printed on the package.
“It’s impossible for the price of packaged rice to be increased up to 30 baht per bag although the producers have experienced higher costs of at least 30 per cent,” he said.
Somkiat said that rice packers would scrap sale promotion campaigns like “buy one, get one free” offers or a big discount on the suggested retail price.
According to him, rice packers have opted to absorb the higher cost and business loss, as competition in the market has become more intense.
He said the producers of packaged rice are competing against others by keeping their prices low, and this situation would remain in the second half of the year. Some producers have opted to leave the market for businesses that bring them more returns, he added.
Meanwhile, a source from a rice mill said that rice prices are going down after the increases a few weeks ago. So, a price increase of up to 30 baht for a 5kg bag of packaged rice is “impossible”, the source said.
Also, the supply of rice is increasing as more harvests of off-season rice are flooding the market, according to the source. For example, rice paddy is now sold at 9,000-9,200 baht per tonne, down from the previous 9,600-9,900.