Rice Consumption Spikes During Ramadan Holy Month Traditions

Sunbird Rice billboards were seen across major cities in Jordan in preparation for the start of Ramadan, the Muslim holy month, on May 15. Photo: USA Rice

Per capita rice consumption in Jordan is high and traditionally increases during the Muslim holy month of Ramadan, which starts this year on May 15.  Rice consumption in the Muslim world always spikes during the observance, which is why USA Rice steps up promotions to increase awareness prior to the start of the holiday.

A campaign with leading brand Sunbird Rice that just concluded utilized more than 100 billboards at prime locations here in the capital city, as well as at major cities throughout the Kingdom.  Similar promotions are planned with other selected brands in the coming weeks.

“Jordan is an important medium grain market – last year U.S. rice exports were 146,600 MT with a value of $102.9 million.  But, it’s also become a very tough market,” said USA Rice Marketing Program Director Eszter Somogyi.  “Deteriorating consumer incomes due to the tense political and economic situation in the region, as well as the high number of refugees entering the country, is putting pressure on the local economy.”

During discussions last week with U.S. rice importers here, USA Rice gathered market information and outlined promotional activities planned for the current year, many of which are conducted in conjunction with local brands who also contribute financially to the activities.

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“During routine visits to different sales outlets including traditional wholesalers as well as hyper markets and so called mini markets, local traders pointed out that prices of rice are very low,” said Somogyi.  ”

In this challenging economic situation, we are fortunate to have well established U.S. rice brands here working with USA Rice in many different activities, from outdoor billboards to radio and print advertising and consumer promotions, and starting this year, media activities on the internet to boost sales of U.S. rice.”


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