Cambodian Rice Crowned World’s Best

Cambodia's fragrant Phka Romduol jasmine rice has been crowned the best rice in the world at this year’s World Rice Forum held in Phuket, Thailand, making it the fifth time Cambodia has won the title
Lay Chhun Hour speaks with Kiripost in a recent interview in Phnom Penh. Kiripost/Siv Channa
Lay Chhun Hour speaks with Kiripost in a recent interview in Phnom Penh. Kiripost/Siv Channa

Cambodia's Phka Romduol rice has been crowned the best rice in the world at the prestigious World Rice Forum.

On November 12, the Cambodian grain was named the "World's Best Rice" for 2022 at the event held in Phuket, Thailand. This is the fifth league in which Cambodian rice has won the title.

CEO of City Rice Import, Lay Chhun Hour, said Phka Romdual rice secured the top spot as it is one of the most fragrant, soft, and well-known jasmine clusters. Additionally, he chose high-quality rice from a Battambang area with plenty of water and a healthy climate.

A ceremony in Phuket where Cambodia's fragrant Phka Romduol jasmine had won the best rice award. Kiripost via Song Saran
A ceremony in Phuket where Cambodia's fragrant Phka Romduol jasmine had won the best rice award. Kiripost via Song Saran

He added that there are three types of selection categories: appearance, aroma, and texture, and making quality rice involves multiple procedures. Most importantly, he chooses only pure rice seeds.

“We grind it multiple times, cut it properly, and polish it several times. When polishing, we grind the rice and let it for 72 hours to cool before polishing it several times to make it shine,” he said. “Then we spray until the rice has no color and when we complete that, we choose the rice by hand, picking just 2kg of rice that is the same length and looks unique.”

A person holds up the best rice award in Phuket. Kiripost via Song Saran
A person holds up the best rice award in Phuket. Kiripost via Song Saran

He said that City Rice company selected the quality rice as Cambodia holds a rice competition and he always passed it. He added that as rice selection takes a long time, the majority of companies do not participate.

“Some firms don't want to do it or don't have experience. Also, it’s harvesting season and we must take some employees and machinery to do it, which is a waste of time,” he said. “But, we will win the best rice when we put our heart our soul and our trust in farmers' efforts in growing the best paddy for us.”

He said he has already submitted rice to the competition three times. However, he was unable to claim the title for City Rice as other candidates joined him.

“For the first two times, we submit it, we cannot label it City Rice since there are three other candidates, and we don't want the other firm that submits to feel like no one gives them credit,” he said.

“This time was too short, and no one did it. So, I had to withdraw staff in order to accomplish that, which is why we only had City Rice.”