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India’s rice export curbs trigger panic buying among NRIs in US | India News



VIJAYAWADA: India’s ban decision export of non-Basmati rice has led to confusion among Telugu communities in North America, Europe and West Asia about the possibility of rice shortages. This has led to long queues outside grocery stores in India.

NRIs are seen bringing home dozens of bags of rice because of fears of shortages in the coming months. There is a place where a 9kg bag of rice is sold for 27 USD.
Long, zigzag lines were seen at popular Indian stores in the major cities of Texas, Michigan and New Jersey, which are home to large Telugu populations. Inundated with customers demanding to buy only rice, stores in India have even introduced sales restrictions stating that each customer can only sell one bag of rice.

The situation is slightly better in Alabama and Illinois. Snigdha Gudavalli from the Texas city of Denton said they had to wait in line for more than 30 minutes just to enter the store. “By the time we walked in, Sona Mahsuri was sold out and we bought the boiled Ponni,” she said.
Krishna Mohan S from Detroit was in a similar situation. He said the reason for the panic could be twofold. Firstly, there may be a shortage or no supply of rice as delicious as Sona Mahsuri and there is every possibility of a price increase. “We have seen prices skyrocket during the pandemic. With that precedent, people are rushing to hoard rice first,” he said.
Jayanth Reddy Mettu, who runs a restaurant in Dublin, Ireland, told TOI there is no frenzy in the UK or Ireland. However, Telugu people are worried about the possibility of price increases in the next few months.
S Ramakrishna Prasad from Dubai also noticed that there is still no shortage of Sona Mahsuri supplies. However, the big concern now is that rice prices could soar further, which have been at higher levels since Covid-19.

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