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Rice exporter strives to better working environment for rice farmers

Written by The Frontier Post

ISLAMABAD (APP): The country’s leading ‘Basmati Rice Exporter’ on Sunday strived for a better working environment for rice farmers and other workers engaged in rice value chain.

The farmers are at the forefront of food security in the country and due to them, “Our exports and foreign exchange reserves are increasing”, Chief Operating Officer of rice exporter group, Rice Partners Pvt Ltd (RPL) Muhammad Ali Tariq said here on Sunday.

He said this while addressing to a seminar for multi stakeholders on decent working organized by the leading ‘Basmati Rice Exporter of Pakistan’, Rice Partners Pvt Ltd (RPL) in collaboration of Helvetas Pakistan and Swiss Solidarity organized an event on “Interactive Dialogue among Stakeholders to share Knowledge on Decent Working Conditions in Rice Value Chain of Pakistan.

Ali Tariq said that RPL has been working for welfare of agriculture labor for the past 5 years. RPL established Community Mother Centres at multiple villages of district Sheikhupura in which decent environment was provided to the children of agriculture labor particularly female rice transplanters.

He added that Free Medical Camps were also organized to provide free medication to the rice transplanters at their working places throughout the rice transplanting season.

These all activities are being done to ensure decent working conditions in the rice value chain.

Replying to a question, he said that “We have launched a corona awareness campaign for rice farmers and also distributed various items including Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) to protect them from the epidemic.

The CEO said rice growers are the world’s first food security defense line, whose epidemic protection should be our top priority.

Rice farmers are an integral part of the agro-industry and are an essential element of this food chain, he said.

Ali Tariq said that Pakistan’s rice production of more than four million and around US $ three billion in foreign exchange are due to the farmers whose services, “we will never forget.”

While addressing the seminar Sustainability Head RPL, Zafar Iqbal said RPL has trained thousands of farmers on sustainable rice production and also provided them the facility of land laser leveling on 50 percent cost sharing basis.

In a seminar number of representatives of government and non-government organizations i.e Education Department, Health Department, Social Welfare Department, Labor Department, Child Protection and Welfare Bureau Punjab, Agriculture Department, Matco Foods, Agahee, Rural Community and Development Society (RCDS), Social Activists and RPL Contract farmers participated.

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