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Faced by a shortage of storage space for rice grains, Thailand has revealed plans to rent private warehouses to store next month’s harvest

rice  SistakThailand’s rice millers have warned that collection for February might have to stop for lack of storage space for grains. (Image source: Sistak/Flickr)

Thailand’s rice millers have warned that collection might have to stop for lack of storage space, as the country expects to produce about eight million to 10mn tonnes of paddy rice in the February harvest, or about five million to seven million tonnes once husked.

That will be in addition to government purchases of up to 20mn tonnes of milled rice in an intervention scheme kicked off in October 2011 aimed at helping farmers by paying prices above the market rate.

Thailand rice exporter Boonsong Siam Land said in a statement, “There’s no problem at all and we can rent more private warehouses to store rice.”

“We would, however, need a few days or a week to check them out, and clean them up to make them suitable for storing rice.”

A commerce ministry official said the government will rent an additional 180 warehouses over the next few weeks to accommodate the grain. There are already 60 warehouses across the country storing the grain it has bought so far.