Steps to borrow maize from private firms inappropriate: Observer

Jakarta (ANTARA News) – The governments step to borrow 10 thousand tons of maize from two large feed mill companies is inappropriate, professor of the Bogor Institute of Agriculture Dwi Andreas who is also an observer said.

The professor made the remarks in a written statement in Jakarta on Sunday in response to Agriculture Ministrys policy to borrow 10 thousand tons of maize from two large feed mill firms, Charoen Pokhand and Japfa.

He said that the price of corn now could reach Rp6,000 per kilogram (kg) which put a heavy burden on the breeders.

“The government has ordered state-owned logistics board (Bulog) to import 100 tons of maize. This is indeed not a matter of maize need for one or two months only. But it is a matter of current need, which forces (the Ministry) to borrow here and there,” he said.

Actually, the 10 tons of maize are not a large volume as it could be produced in a one-hectare maize plantation. So, if the the ministry is forced to borrow only for 10 thousand ton need, the governments claim to have maize production surplus could be questioned by the public.

He predicted that maize stock will be scarce until February 2019. Thus, if feed import is restricted it will create other constraints.

Regarding the borrowed maize, Director General of Livestock Feed Protection and Nursery of the Ministry of Agriculture, Sugiono, said the 10 million tons of maize borrowed from two companies because stocks had been scarce in the field.

At the same time, imported maize, as recommended by the Ministry of Agriculture, needs time before it could arrive at home.

“The livestock cannot wait and should be fed now. They could not wait. So, for the time being we are forced to borrow the commodity,” he said.

The maize loan from the two feed mill firms will later be handed to Bulog. The logistics board will further distribute the maize to breeders at a price of Rp4 thousand per kg.

“But this is for small breeders who belong to small and medium scale breeding firm,” he added.

The borrowed corn will be repaid as soon as the 100 thousand tons of imported maize arrive in the country.

Source: ANTARA News