Indonesia's Cassava Export Increases Three-Fold as Wheat Prices Soar

Diana Mariska
The harvest of cassava in Bantul, Yogyakarta. (Photo: Special Doc.)
The harvest of cassava in Bantul, Yogyakarta. (Photo: Special Doc.) - The Ministry of Agriculture has revealed that Indonesia’s cassava export has increased three-fold this year as global wheat prices soar due to the ongoing war in Ukraine.

Director general of food crops at the Ministry Suwandi said while wheat prices soar all across the globe, the export of cassava and food alternatives like sorghum have increased significantly by almost 300 percent.

“I see this as a blessing. Since the prices of wheat rises, the opportunity for our cassava and sorghum [to enter global market] increases, and [the market] appears to be interested. This is evident on how in 2022, our export of cassava and its derivatives increased by almost 300 percent compared to 2020,” Suwandi said on Wednesday, July 3, as reported by Antara.

As Ukraine is one of world’s biggest wheat producers, global supply chain and prices have been substantially disrupted by the ongoing regional crisis resulting from Russia’s invasion of Ukraine that started in February.

Suwandi said Indonesia depends on three million tons of wheat imported from Ukraine, or equal to 36 percent from total domestic demand.

However, Suwandi noted that the geopolitical tension is not the sole reasons behind the potentially prolonged and worsened global food crisis: the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and extreme weather fueled by climate change also contribute to the dire situation.

Despite the global trend, the Ministry’s official ensured that Indonesia’s agriculture has been thriving since the start of the pandemic, including its export.

In 2020, Suwandi said agriculture export rose by 15 percent from the previous year, and in 2021, it increased by 38 percent compared to 2020.

Lastly, he also confirmed that increasing export is one of the strategies set out by the Indonesian government to cope with inflation that is also badly hitting many countries.

This includes encouraging more exports and penetrating new markets for commodities.

In July, Indonesia exported 50 tons of chicken products to Singapore as supply shortage hit the neighbor country due to chicken export ban implemented by Malaysia.

“This export proves that Indonesia has gained more global trust on our agricultural products. More particularly, our livestock products can meet the standards set out by export markets,” Minister of Agriculture Syahrul Yasin Limpo said on July 13.

Tag # cassava export # indonesia export # agriculture export # ministry of agriculture # indonesia agriculture # agriculture sector in indonesia

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