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Montevideo, April 17th 2024 - 11:50 UTC



Rice harvest in Uruguay expected to generate US$ 700 million in exports

Monday, March 25th 2024 - 20:29 UTC
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It's rice harvest time in Uruguay, and the country expects to collect over a million tons of the cereal which is enjoying a favorable international prices prospect since the world's main exporter India, has dropped out of the market. The production of Uruguay's 150,000 hectares of rice paddies are expected to bring in close to US$ 700 million in exports this year, which will be higher than the US$ 550/600 million from the 2023 harvest.

Although 2023 was a record harvest, 1.5 million tons, because of very favorable climate, sunshine at the correct maturing time for the cereal, with yields of 9,500 kilos per hectare, this year it is anticipated yields will reach 8,800 kilos/hectare according to Alfredo Lago, head of the Rice Planters Union.

“Last year was a record year and harvest, this year we will be back closer to average normality, nevertheless a very good yield by regional and world standards,” added Mr. Lago, who explained that 95% of Uruguay's annual production is exported while 5% is left for domestic consumption and seeds.

Lago said that the Uruguay rice industry and farmers generate some 8.000 direct jobs and an estimated 250.000 are involved indirectly.

“Yields this year are lesser but the international commercial environment is more positive, and the quality of Uruguay's rice has a great global reputation. Main buyers of Uruguayan rice are the European Union, Brazil, Central American countries, Peru and Mexico”, said Lago underlining that Uruguay with Brazil figure among the leading South American rice exporters and eighth at international level.

Besides rice, Uruguay's main cereal production includes, soybeans, wheat, rape, corn and barley, according to the country's Agriculture Programming and Policy Office. Soybeans absorb a million hectares annually, 250,000 of wheat and 165,000 of rape. Uruguay is planning to improve irrigation in rice areas so as to reach 200,000 hectares of production land.

Categories: Agriculture, Uruguay.
Tags: rice.

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