RPA calls out GRDB over Panama rice mix-up

first_imgThe Guyana Rice Producers Association (RPA) is flaying the Guyana Rice Development Board (GRDB) along with Agriculture Minister Noel Holder following Panama’s rejection of several containers of rice.The RPA said the responsible parties should take immediate measures to have the situation rectified.The authorities in Panama rejected several containers of rice following a mix-up with the shipment. One of the reasons for the rejection is that the shipment contained parboiled rice. There were more than 700 tons of parboiled rice packed in 20lbs bags in the containers.The RPA said it boggles the mind to even contemplate how over 700 tons of parboiled rice could have passed through the various quality and quantity checks and customs inspections and arrive in Panama, which is a white rice import market.“The contracted party (the seller) is the Guyana Rice Development Board (GRDB) for this particular market. The GRDB, in order to fulfill its contractual obligations, purchases rice from millers in order to supply this market. Notably, the GRDB charges millers US$8 per unit for inspection and to certify the quality and quantity supplied.The rice is even checked during the processing at the mills by the GRDB. The bags are then packed into the containers under the watchful eyes of the GRDB officers, samples are then taken and sent to the GRDB Head Office laboratories that are ISO certified, along with the number of the containers and the containers’ seal numbers.Further, the final sample is used for the preparation of the export grade certificate. The GRDB is the buyer of the rice from the millers, the agency is also responsible for certifying the quality and quantity and they are the contracted party to export to Panama,” the RPA said via a statement on Friday.Panama is currently Guyana’s best market with the best price and according to the Association, this fiasco has the potential to threaten the continuation of selling to that market, which would be a great financial loss to the farmers. The RPA said the GRDB can also lose its ISO certification, which will be a further blow to the rice industry.last_img read more