Harvesting cassava in Thailand- Illustrative photo (Photo: cgiar.org)

Bangkok (VNA) – Thailand’s Cassava Management and Policy Committee has introduced a strategy to develop the country into a leading cassava producer in Southeast Asia.

The strategy will be implemented from 2017 – 2026 emphasising the application of scientific and technical advances to production.

The committee aims to ensure a balance between supply and demand of cassava for the long term, while turning Thailand into a centre of cassava production and trading.

Cassava is set to be grown on 1.36 million ha while high-yield zones will be set up.

Productivity is expected to increase from 50 tonnes per ha to 70 tonnes per ha by 2026, while the cost of production is hoped to be cut by 10 percent.

Cassava export value is hoped to reach at least 5 billion USD by 2026.

Speaking at a meeting with the committee, Minister of Commerce Apiradi Tantraporn said the strategy will add value to cassava products, and help Thailand rely less on cassava imports, mainly from China.

According to market research, global cassava demand will constantly increase in the next ten years with the development of technology using the plant’s products in many industries such as chemicals, bio-petroleum, papers and solvent.-VNA