During a meeting between Production Minister Alfredo Volio and more than 400 rice growers last week in Cañas, in the northwestern province of Guanacaste, the new minister urged his audience to take advantage of new research and technologies to increase productivity.
Volio visited the Enrique Jiménez Núñez Experimental Station, part of the Institute of Innovation and Transference of Agricultural and Fishing Technology (INTA). He praised genetic improvements that have yielded new varieties of rice that produce 8.5 metric tons per hectare.
“With (these yields)… now we can talk about competing,” said Volio, whose audience included representatives of the National Rice Corporation (CONARROZ), rice farmers and visitors from the U.N. Food and Agriculture Organization, according to a statement from CONARROZ.
CONARROZ President Oscar Campos told Volio government authorities should do more to support rice growers, who face competition from countries where government subsidies are available to farmers, the statement said.
The meeting was one of Volio’s first acts as the head of the new Ministry of Production, which encompasses what were the Ministry of Agriculture and Cattle (MAG) and part of the Ministry of Economy, Industry and Commerce (MEIC).