Company aims to modernize industry, promote organic rice farming and improve farmers’ quality of life
May 2018 — Saba Corporation, a privately-held, manufacturer and global exporter of rice and other commodities, is investing US $100 million in Southeast Asia’s rice industry to help modernize the sector, promote organic rice farming and improve farmers’ quality of life. The investment will span two years and is perhaps one of the largest investments in Southeast Asia’s rice industry.
With its investment, Saba Corporation is buying outdated and abandoned rice mills in Vietnam, Cambodia, Laos and Thailand and converting them into storage facilities with bio-energy rice dryers that can help combat the effects of climate change.
Saba Corporation will also buy farmers’ rice paddies and supply farmers with equipment, seeds and organic fertilizer – all free of charge. This is a sea change from the centuries-long practice of farmers being forced to purchase everything necessary to farm, leaving them with mounting debt and continuing the cycle of poverty. Saba Corporation also trains farmers in organic farming.
Golden Grain Rice, a Saba Corporation subsidiary, will process the farmers’ rice and distribute it to wholesalers throughout Southeast Asia and parts of Africa and the Middle East.
In addition, Saba Corporation’ philanthropic arm, Saba Family Foundations, plans to build and operate schools and health clinics in farming communities that have no access to basic education and health-care services. The schools and clinics will be staffed by local instructors, doctors and nurses who know the communities well and speak the language.
“Rice is a major food staple all over the world, and consumption is growing rapidly every year, especially in non-Asian regions such as Africa and the Middle East,” said Malini Saba, Founder and Chairman of Saba Corporation. “ Farmers are the key to ensuring that rice production and quality keeps pace with demand. But the old way of farming puts farmers and their families at risk. Helping farmers reduce their debt, improve their lives and farm organically is the only way the rice industry can survive and thrive. Moreover, helping people achieve economic stability is the right thing to do.”
About Saba Corporation
Saba Corporation, founded in 1996 by entrepreneur and philanthropist Malini Saba, is a privately-held company that operates agricultural commodities, mining, ship breaking and hospitality businesses in South and Southeast Asia, Australia and Africa.
About Saba Family Foundations
Saba Family Foundations was founded in 2002 by entrepreneur and philanthropist Malini Saba to focus on the needs of under-served women and children worldwide. The foundation’s three areas of focus are health-care, education and human rights. The foundation has undertaken numerous projects, including: partnering with Stanford Medical Center to train physicians from developing countries; distributing preventative health information on HIV/AIDS, immunizations, gastric and reproductive health; providing vocational education for women in Togo, West Africa; and supporting human rights issues around the world.
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