Cambodia organized the second rice festival here on Tuesday, aiming at promoting domestic rice among local and foreign consumers and tourists, officials said.
A variety of rice species have been exhibited as a practical rice growing method is also shown at the three-day event. There were also best rice competition and food tasting of Cambodian rice dishes.
"The festival aims to promote Cambodian rice to national and international guests," Sok Puthyvuth, president of the Cambodia Rice Federation, said at the opening ceremony, adding that the Cambodian government is committed to exporting one million tons of milled rice by 2015.
"Rice industry has greatly contributed to developing the economy and reducing poverty," he said.
He added that Cambodian fragrant rice is famous for its delicious flavor, and the rice was awarded the world's best rice for two consecutive years at the Global Rice Tasting Competitions held in Indonesia in 2012 and in China's Hong Kong in 2013.
Cambodian tourism minister Thong Khon said the event allowed international visitors to gain further understanding of Cambodian rice's quality.
"I'd like to urge all restaurants and hotels to help promote Cambodian rice to foreign tourists so that the fame of our rice will be better known on the international arena," he said.
According to the minister, along with the festival, there will be a 2-day World Rice Conference, which will start from Wednesday.
With more than 80 percent of the population being farmers, Cambodia produced 9.4 million tons of paddy rice last year. With the amount, it has over 3 million tons of milled rice left over for exports this year.
An official data showed that during the first nine months of this year, Cambodia exported 269,370 tons of milled rice, up only 1.2 percent compared to the same period last year.
Some 77 companies have brokered Cambodian rice for 57 countries and regions around the world. France, Poland, Malaysia, the Netherlands and China are the main buyers.