‘Eat more rice!’ Thai officials tell youth

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“Eat more rice!” Thai officials are telling the country’s youth.

The Thai Commerce Ministry wants young people to eat more rice. The ministry launched a campaign after a study showed that Thailand’s consumption of rice had fallen.

The department launched the “Thai Kids Enjoy Thai Rice” roadshow, visiting 10 schools and weekend markets, Nation Thailand reported yesterday. The Thai Rice Entrepreneurs Association showcased rice-based products and demonstrated how to prepare basic meals. It also provided information on different rice varieties and their nutritional properties.

The campaign also displayed new rice varieties, including Thai riceberry or coloured ‘Khao Kam.’

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The Deputy Director-General of the Department of Internal Trade, Udom Srisomsong, said that rice consumption among Thais dropped from 100 kilograms per person per year to 72 kilograms per person per year in 2018. He said that in Bangkok, consumption dropped to just 50 kilograms per person per year.

The president of the Thai Rice Entrepreneurs Association, Yongyut Pruekmahadamrong, said the new project aimed to educate Thai children on the benefits of locally grown rice varieties. He said…

“Young people are urged to consume more rice with vibrant colours.”

The honourary president of the association, Somkiat Makkayathorn, praised Thailand’s jasmine rice. He said…

“Thai jasmine rice is number one in the world for its taste, aroma and softness. Thai riceberry or coloured ‘Khao Kam’ is packed with antioxidants that strengthen the body.”

Somkiat added that eating Thai rice was important for preserving Thai culture for future generations.

Thailand’s rice industry has been facing some challenges recently.

In September last year, the Thai Rice Exporters Association said that Thailand needs new breeds of rice to compete in the global rice market. The association’s former president, Charoen Laothamatas, said that Thailand tends to set its rice prices too high for its quality, which is why the country’s rice export volume has continued to drop. He noted that in his 40 years working in the rice industry, he has not seen Thailand develop any new rice breeds.

'Eat more rice!' Thai officials tell youth | News by Thaiger

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Tara Abhasakun

A Thai-American dual citizen, Tara has reported news and spoken on a number of human rights and cultural news issues in Thailand. She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in history from The College of Wooster. She interned at Southeast Asia Globe, and has written for a number of outlets. Tara reports on a range of Thailand news issues.

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