L'Express (Port Louis)

18 November 2012

Mauritius: Food Security - Mauritian Non-GMO and Low GI Rice on the Market

In a few days, the Mauritian incorporated Vita Rice Company will place on the local market its first harvest of a non-GMO and low glycemic index (GI) rice produced in Cluny, Rose-Belle.

We could have produced this rice in Thailand, India or Madagascar where the cost of production is lower. We have chosen Mauritius because we have the guarantee that this rice will not be contaminated by fields of genetic ally modified rice varieties. The rice will be sold on the local market under the brand name of Mighty and we give an absolute guarantee that it is non GMO" says Herman Suhirman marketing manager of Vita Rice, a Singapore company in which the State Investment Corporation (SIC) has 10 % shares.

Mighty is long grain rice with a low glycemic index (GI) and suits diabetics.

Vita rice will place only 1 000 tons of this rice en the local market.

It intends to beef up production for the local market.

We are producing on a leased 320 hectares field in Cluny. We intend to lease sugar cane land during rotation to produce more rice for the local market "says Herman Suhirman who is of the opinion that Mauritius can be self-sufficient in rice.

Mauritius imports 77 000 tons of rice each year and has never had a large scale production, of this staple food.

Rice production might be severely hit during the coming years in Asia due to climate change which means drought and floods on scales never seen before, say expert in rice production.

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