MANILA, March 4- Rice prices in the Philippines have risen for six straight weeks, piling pressure on the government to import more of the national staple to stabilise markets and curb inflation already at two-year highs.» Read More
*Thailand desperate to raise money to pay farmers. BANGKOK/ SINGAPORE, Jan 17- Thailand's embattled government offered to sell rice at a huge loss, officials said, as it sought to shore up Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra's support among farmers who are concerned that the administration could run out of money to pay them.
--Clyde Russell is a Reuters market analyst. These two commodities form the backbone of Thailand's agriculture, and their fortunes are crucially linked to Yingluck's given her reliance on support from the rural poor. Problem is that the tax relief ended last month and rubber stocks in top buyer China are now the highest in almost a decade.
BANGKOK, Nov 19- Thailand scrambled on Tuesday to fund a rice subsidy scheme that has not paid out to farmers since Oct. 1, a delay that risks alienating key supporters of Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra. The Commerce Ministry buys rice at 15,000 baht a tonne, well above market prices, but has struggled to sell enough to keep the subsidy scheme afloat.
--Clyde Russell is a Reuters market analyst. LAUNCESTON, Australia, Nov 13- Asian rice prices may have found a base around $400 a tonne amid signs that only modest amounts of Thailand's rice mountain are coming to market.
The FDA said, after testing 1,300 samples of rice and rice products, that the amount of detectable arsenic is too low to cause immediate or short-term negative health effects.
Thailand is set to sell half-a-million tons of rice on world markets at a loss, as it scrambles to offload a record stockpile deteriorating in quality in warehouses filled with grain.
Jim Bower, Bower Trading, discusses the impact the big Midwest drought is having on rice. "We think there is potentially there down the road in the rice market," he says.
Record high prices of corn and soybean brought on by the worst U.S. drought in 56 years may be triggering a sense of de ja vu for Asia concerned about a repeat of the food scare in 2008, but most economists are downplaying those fears, for now.
Jonathan Barratt, Founder of Barratt's Bulletin says the volatility and one-way direction in soft commodity prices will spur more buying activity. He thinks potential limits by futures exchanges could stem further moves to the upside.
With commodities enjoying a robust start to 2012, some traders are concerned that crude oil and other hard assets are ripe for a fall.
In spite of the Thai government's warning that the world's largest exporter of rice could lose as much as a quarter of its crop because of the floods, analysts tell CNBC the potential shortfall is unlikely to impact prices.
Abah Ofon, director, agricultural commodities analyst at Standard Chartered, says that soybean prices will continue to outperform other grain markets.
Leif Lybecker Eskesen, chief economist for India & ASEAN at HSBC, talks about food price pressures in India and Southeast Asia.
Michael Langford, proprietary trader at StreamTrading.com., says the commodity market is positioning for higher prices on the back of optimism coming from Europe.
Much like housing years ago, food has become something bigger than itself. It's about far more than sustenance. It's about commodities trading, global trade, energy, biotechnology and government policy. Our special report, "Food Economics, explores all of those dimensions.