Myanmar’s sesame seeds export has earned US$272.79 million in five months (Oct-Feb) of the current financial year2020-2021, according to data released by Myanmar Customs Department. The price of sesame seeds is rising a bit for now owing to the appreciation of the dollar. At present, the black sesame seeds (Samone variety) fetched K120,000-148,000 per bag, and white sesame seeds were priced at K115,000-120,000 per bag, Mandalay depot stated.
Last year, the sesame prices dropped by over 20 per cent compared with the prices in the previous years due to the COVID-19 negative impacts. Consequently, the growers do not make a large profit this year, said a trader from the Mandalay market.
Typically, Myanmar exports about 80 per cent of sesame production to foreign markets. China is a leading buyer of Myanmar sesame. It is also shipped to markets in Japan, South Korea, China (Taipei), the UK, Germany, the Netherlands, Greece, and Poland, among the EU countries. The EU markets prefer organic-farming sesame seeds from Myanmar, said an official from the Trade Promotion Organization. Japan prefers Myanmar black sesame seeds, cultivated under good agricultural practices (GAP), and purchases them after a quality assessment. Black sesame seeds from Myanmar are also exported to South Korea and Japan. Meanwhile, China buys various coloured sesame seeds from the country. This year, Japan has not purchased Myanmar’s sesame yet.
Sesame is cultivated in the country throughout the year. Magway Region, which has gained a reputation as the oil pot of Myanmar, is the primary producer of sesame seeds. The seeds are also grown in Mandalay and Sagaing regions. Of the cooking oil crops grown in Myanmar, the acreage under sesame seed is the highest, accounting for 51.3 per cent of the overall oil crop plantation. The volume of sesame exports has registered over 96,000 metric tonnes worth $130 million in the financial year 2015-2016, $100,000 tonnes worth $145 million in the FY2016-2017, 120,000 tonnes worth $147 million in the FY2017-2018, 33,900 tonnes valued at $43.8 million in the 2018 mini-budget period, 125,800 tonnes worth $212.5 million in the FY2018-2019 and over 150,000 tonnes of sesame worth $240 million in the previous FY2019-2020.
Source; The Global New Light of Myanmar