Jul 31, 2020
ARLINGTON, VA – With two months remaining in the federal government’s procurement fiscal year, more than 100,000 MT of U.S. rice has already gone into global feeding programs, including almost 34,000 MT of fortified rice.
“This is a record amount for U.S. rice going into all three U.S. government food aid programs, Food For Progress (monetization), Food For Education (school feeding), and Food For Peace (Title II PL 480) at this point in the fiscal year,” said Jesica Kincaid, USA Rice manager of international trade policy. “And the largest amount of fortified rice used in global feeding programs overall.”
In each of the last three years, 80,000 MT of U.S. rice was used in food aid over the course of the entire fiscal year, including 25,000 MT of fortified rice.
Traditionally rice is used most frequently in the U.S. Department of Agriculture school feeding programs but this year has seen wider use of rice in multi-year development and emergency initiatives through the U.S. Agency for International Development Title II programs and two large monetization programs in Sub-Saharan Africa of more than 20,000 MT each.
“It has always been the goal of USA Rice to advocate for widespread use of all kinds of rice across all global feeding programs and to see greater use of fortified rice,” said Kincaid. “Rice is one of the most widely consumed commodities in the world and fortified rice provides significant new possibilities for rice to play a critical role in defeating global malnutrition, especially now in response to the effects of the global pandemic.”
The number of countries consuming rice through U.S. food aid programs has continued to diversify and increase every year, reaching new destinations such as Timor L’Este (East Timor) and numerous Sub-Saharan African nations.
“As the world continues to face food insecurity and as we continue to assess the deep and lasting effects of COVID-19, USA Rice is committed to providing nutritious and fortified rice to the world’s most vulnerable populations,” Kincaid said.