The government will pause its efforts to dispose of state rice stocks to curb any adverse impact on domestic rice prices as the latest harvest enters the market. According to Duangporn Rodphaya, director-general of the Foreign Trade Department, with the annual rice harvest season beginning earlier, rice sales must be held cautiously. “Authorities are now studying proper periods and types of grains for disposal, and adjusting criteria to comply with changing conditions,” she said. Mrs Duangporn said the government now controls 8.4 million tonnes, of which half is good-quality rice and the rest is suitable for industrial use. The quantity of state rice stocks has fallen from 18.7 million tonnes accumulated through various rice-pledging schemes in 2011-14. Earlier last month, Thailand Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha told relevant authorities to closely monitor rice prices before calling for a new round of rice auctions.