Heirloom beans and butter beans are traded well in Mandalay market as the demand by China rises. Earlier, the market of those beans was cooling in the early outbreak of the coronavirus infection. In recent days, the market raises its head again on account of China’s strong demand on butter beans and heirloom beans, said Mandalay traders.
The heirloom bean currently fetches K57,000 per three-basket bag. The price is up by K500 as against July’s rate. Meanwhile, the cost of butter beans has remained unchanged at K54,000 per pack, and they are selling well, said U Soe Win Myint, depot owner from Mandalay. “We are happy for market recovery. But, the price should have risen higher than that. Chinese traders cannot pay higher when the Yuan is weakening. China has been purchasing heirloom beans for four years. The demand is increasing year over year. The beans are selling well, starting from August this year. The only small volume of the beans has remained in the local market. If Yuan value gains, the beans will be priced higher up to over K60,000 per bag. The growers are just okay with the prevailing prices,” he added.
As the heirloom beans have market potentials, the growers are interested in extending the growing acres. Myanmar exports about 75 per cent of butter bean production to foreign markets — Japan, China, Denmark, Singapore, the Republic of Korea, Malaysia, China (Taipei) and Viet Nam, with an export volume of 15,000-30,000 tonnes per year. Farmers primarily grow the butter beans in Sagaing, Bago, Magway, Mandalay and Ayeyawady regions and Mon and northern Shan states. Magway Region produces good-quality butter beans, and Japan buyers prefer them.—Min Htet Aung (Mandalay sub-printing house) (Translated by Ei Myat Mon)