Statement of President of the Republic of Indonesia at the Inspection of Sorghum Seed Planting and Harvest in East Sumba Regency, East Nusa Tenggara Province, June 2, 2022

By Office of Assistant to Deputy Cabinet Secretary for State Documents & Translation     Date 2 Juni 2022
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Assalamu’alaikum warahmatullahi wabarakatuh,

May peace be upon us all.

This morning I am in East Sumba regency, East Nusa Tenggara province following a warning given by the FAO (Food and Agriculture Organization), a warning that was also given by the UN that the world is facing and will face food crises.

And it is already evident.

Global food prices are rising; hence, we must have a big plan. Our country must stand ready to face food crises.

We want to have many alternatives, many choices that we can work on in our country. We aim for food diversification, food alternatives.

We must not rely on only rice for we have corn, sago, and this is actually our old plant. We also have sorghum. This is the product.

We have test-planted it in East Sumba regency on an area of 60 hectares.

We know the results already.

As we saw earlier, it is excellent, meeting the economic criteria as well. It can also provide employment for many and the result per hectare in one year can reach approximately Rp50 million net. It is excellent, meaning that if it is divided by twelve, the income is around Rp4 million per month, which is not a pittance.

Therefore, I have ordered the Governor and the Regent to ascertain the size of land that can be used to plant sorghum so we are not entirely dependent on wheat, nor on imported corn because we have tried [planting] corn here and it was not a success. We tried sorghum and it was a big success as it has been grown and planted well by our farmers before in East Sumba in East Nusa Tenggara province.

After this tryout, we aim to discover the drawbacks, the problems. We will expand the planting of sorghum in East Nusa Tenggara province so we can have alternative food sources to face global food crises. If there is an excess, if there is a supply, it will be alright. In fact, we aim to export it in order to generate foreign exchange for our country.

And sorghum field here produces five tons per hectare, at least five tons.

That concludes my statement.

I thank you.

(DH/EP)

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