While promoting domestic rice at several government Ministries such as the Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries (MAF) and Ministry of Health since last year, the Project has recently started to promote domestic rice to restaurants and hotels in Dili. In the recent first visit, the team of the Project and the National Directorate (ND) of Agro-Commerce managed to identify 10 restaurants that are interested in serving domestic rice of the CAAKUB and ACELDA to their customers in the future, while they said that they will firstly test the rice to see its quality and taste before deciding to use it.
It was also observed that some restaurants have used domestic rice such as Membramo in the past, and they therefore requested the team to provide Membramo for them in the future. They have also asked for specific varieties like IR64 and red rice, while other restaurants like the Warung Solo have already been using the CAAKUB rice since the last year.
Ms. Amalia Lemos (45) of Zenivel restaurant which serves Indonesian dishes said that in the past she served domestic rice from Maliana at her restaurant. However, she decided to change it to import rice due to the unavailability of the domestic rice in the market. Now she is happy that the Maliana rice is coming back, and she is very much looking forward to serving it at her restaurant again.
On the other hand, Ms. Mize Rosa Soares Mendonsa (35), a manager of the NOVO TURISMO Resort & Spa Hotel who also provides food service to her foreign guests, said that as a Timorese she is very interested in promoting domestic rice to them. She loves to cook Membramo for her guests because of its aromatic flavour, therefore she asked the CAAKUB to provide Membramo for her hotel in the future. She is also interested in testing other varieties like IR64 and red rice which are currently sold by the CAAKUB.
According to Mr. Shinji Hironaka, the Japanese expert on agricultural distribution and sales, approaching to restaurants and hotels is a strategy by the Project and the ND of Agro-Commerce to drastically increase the consumption rate of domestic rice. He explained that if every 10 restaurants are able to consume 50 kg of domestic rice in a day, 500 kg will be sold out in a day, 15 tons in a month and 180 tons in a year. Therefore, he believes that this approach will be effective in the future for both the CAAKUB and ACELDA in promoting their domestic rice to the private sector including local restaurants and hotels. Furthermore, Mr. Hironaka said that it is his dream to see people commonly eat domestic rice in Dili before the end of the Project by increasing sales of domestic rice to the private sector every year. He finally requested the CAAKUB and the ACELDA to provide domestic rice of good quality, especially the specific varieties those restaurants asked for them.
The Project and the ND of Agro-Commerce will soon arrange a meeting between the CAAKUB, the ACELDA and the restaurant owners for signing a contract on sales of the domestic rice.
The team of the Project and the ND of Agro-Commerce visiting the restaurants in Dili (1).
The team of the Project and the ND of Agro-Commerce visiting the restaurants in Dili (2).
Staff of the ND of Agro-Commerce explaining about the CAAKUB rice to the restaurant owners (1).
Staff of the ND of Agro-Commerce explaining about the CAAKUB rice to the restaurant owners (2).
NOVO TURISMO Resort & Spa Hotel.
Pantai Laut restaurant which was recently visited by the team.