Just as the media and the public are losing interest in the government's populist rice pledging scheme, the latest report from the Rome-based Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) warns that Thailand may be running out of space to store rice.
It is a timely, if not a rough, wake-up call that the scheme is still kicking but that the worst about it is yet to emerge, like opening Pandora's box which is about to burst and spill out all the worms.
The FAO predicted that the rice stockpile will surge to a record high this year due to the rice pledging scheme to the point that there may be no room in warehouses to store the staple. According to the report, milled rice holdings may jump 40% to 18.2 million tonnes in 2013 as the government is expected to buy as much as 11 million tonnes of unmilled rice this harvest compared to nine million tonnes from the last harvest.
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