TEMPO.CO, Makassar – Agriculture Minister Andi Amran Sulaiman says recent media reports on the circulation of plastic rice were false. He said his ministry together with the National Police HQ, the Food and Drugs Supervisory Agency (BPOM) and the Trade Ministry had concluded their lab testing on the so-called plastic rice samples.
“The results are negative,” Amran told reporters on Wednesday, adding that the sample of plastic rice previously tested by state-run survey company PT Sucofindo had also been re-tested—also with negative results.
“That’s why we are curious why there are different results between Sucofindo and four other laboratories. Maybe they use a different method,” said Amran.
Amran called on the people not to fret about the rumored circulation of rice plastic, saying similar rumors were also rife in Thailand in Malaysia. "The examination results also have also proved that these rumors were false," he said.
Amran explained that logically nobody could profit from selling plastic rice—given that the price of plastic rice was Rp12,000 kg, while the prices of medium rice were around Rp6,000-Rp8,000 per kg. "So it's better to just sell plastic," he said.
Amran has reported the new findings to President Joko Widodo during a Working Cabinet meeting and asked the media not to spend their energy and time to cover this issue.
“We should work, become more productive and continue the food self-sufficiency program,” said Amran.