Struggle against high prices, Haitian government ordered 300,000 bags of rice

Understanding the vulnerability in which the Haitian population is today in regard to high cost of food, the Haitian government has reacted by creating a price stabilization Commission. In addition, the government has ordered 300,000 bags of rice in order to affect the current price of rice in the market.


The 300,000 bags of rice is expected to be injected immediately into the market in order to reduce the price of rice. The Martelly Lamothe government informed the public that they will continue to follow this policy every time they see an increase on price of rice.

What kind of guarantee do the growers in the Artibonite Valley have that they are not wasting their time planting rice such as Diri blan (white), Diri jaun (yellow), Diri chojdé, Diri madam gougousse, la crete or rexoro?

How will this help local production since it is not certain that these local rice producers will be able to make a profit?

Are we going into a price fixing method of economy?

A preventive measure by the Haitian government:

The decision of the Haitian government to import 300,000 bags of rice on an emergency basis is an attempt to put some water on the fire that started burning. Periodically, for reasons related to drought, flood, increase in the cost of materials or gas or other reasons that affect agricultural products the price of various food products becomes more expensive and inaccessible to many more. the more vulnerable sector of the population are faced with famine. This can lead to social explosion where the population gets involved in strikes and manifestation, ultimately a demand for Prime Minister convocation, Non-confidence vote or even govern ment exile.

Some tips about rice production in Haiti:

Along with corn, cassava, millet, pasta, and fruit, rice is a major element of the Haitian diet. Haitian rice has been cultivated in Haiti for over 200 years.

It is estimated that for the past 25 years, the country produces on average 70,000 MT/year (milled basis). With the availability of fertilizer, Taiwan government donations and improved irrigation, output has increased to an estimated 90,000 MT.

Two types of rice is grown in Haiti: Swamp and Mountain rice. Swamp rice include blan (white), jaun (yellow), chojdé, madam gougousse, la crete, and rexoro; and mountain rice include duriz leogane and tejizia. Newer varieties include Madam Gougousse, Shela and Sheida.

The Artibonite Valley region accounts for roughly 70% of the total local rice production in Haiti.

In the 1970s and beginning of 1980s, Haiti was self sufficient in many agricultural and livestock products including rice. However, with population increase that did not keep up with local rice production, several Haitian government have adopted policies such as the elimination of tariffs on imported rice that later on proved to be terrible to the national production.

The Haitian market has been flooded with US rice imports ("Miami rice") with impact that has been devastating to rural population.

Former U.S. president recently apologized publicly for forcing Haiti to drop tariffs on imported, subsidized US rice during his time in office. A policy that wiped out Haitian rice farming and seriously damaged Haiti's ability to be self-sufficient.

Here is the video of Clinton as he apologized publicly:
(video not available)

Two factors are identified as being the most significant causes for the decline in Haitian rice production: the adoption of trade liberalization policies and environmental degradation.

The 2012 earthquake in Haiti did not help the matter either for the local growers. Donated rice invaded the local Haitian market and consequently suppressed domestic production.

In 2010, rice consumption was estimated to be around 380,000 (milled basis) (MT) a year; of that, 300,000 MT were coming from overseas through donations and commercial imports, with 90,000 MT of domestic production.

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Read more: Agriculture and Food, food price, food, economy, Rice, Artibonite Valley, Agriculture and Food

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All Comments (1)

Rodolphe says...

Si ce n'est là ume ridicule aberration.

L'Artibonite pourrait desservir Haïti en son entier et nous laisser des réserves.

Mais au lieu d'encourager la culture de nos terres si fécondes, les cultivateurs sont livrés à eux méme.
Qu'est ce qui nous fait croire que ce riz de l'extérieur serait sein?

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