Rice shortages now hitting North Texas

Reports of India and Thailand cutting exports of high-priced and fragrant gourmet rice have sent Asian families and restaurant owners in North Texas scurrying to buy what they can.

"When people see the prices, they say, 'Something is wrong,'" said Surinder Singh, owner of southwest Fort Worth's India Bazar, which specializes in South Asian and East European groceries. "Then they shop all around, even go to Arlington. When they come back, they're angry but they'll buy three 20-pound bags instead of their usual one."

Singh still has supplies, but they're getting tighter. Costco and Sam's Club now allow a maximum of two to four institutional-size bags per customer, depending on supply.

On Saturday, Costco's Fort Worth store was sold out of both Indian basmati and Thai jasmine. And a Sam's nearby on Bryant Irvin Road has been out of basmati rice "for months," an employee said. Its Westworth store still had 20-pound bags at $15.42.

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