Rice is the seed of the monocot plants Oryza sativa or Oryza glaberrima. It is actually a type of grass and belongs to a family of plants that includes other cereals such as wheat and corn. It is the most important staple food for a large part of the world's human population, especially in East and South Asia, the Middle East, Latin America, and the West Indies.
Rice is grown in more than 100 countries. Farmers from irrigated, lowland, upland, and the flood-prone areas across Asia are the major producers of rice.
The rice plant can grow to 1–1.8 m (3.3–5.9 ft) tall, occasionally more depending on the variety and soil fertility. It has long, slender leaves 50–100 cm (20–39 in) long and 2–2.5 cm (0.79–0.98 in) broad. The edible seed is a grain (caryopsis) 5–12 mm (0.20–0.47 in) long and 2–3 mm (0.079–0.12 in) thick.
 Rice Consumption
Around 3 billion people eat rice everyday including many of the world's poor. About 90% of the world crop is entirely in Asia.
- Asia (416,459,000 t)
- Latin America ( 17,188,000 t)
- Africa ( 15,741,000 t)
- Europe ( 2,550,000 t)
- USA ( 2,704,000 t)
- Australia ( 215,000 t)
- Rest of the world ( 636,000 t)
- World total (457,451,000 t)
Consumption of rice by country—2003/2004 (million metric ton)
|Country||million metric ton|
Between 1961 and 2002, per capita consumption of rice increased by 40%. Rice is the most important crop in Asia. In Cambodia, for example, 90% of the total agricultural area is used for rice production.
U.S. rice consumption has risen sharply over the past 25 years, fueled in part by commercial applications such as beer production. Almost one in five adult Americans now report eating at least half a serving of white or brown rice per day.
 Nutritional Value
Rice, white, long-grain vegetable, raw Nutritional value per 100 g (3.5 oz)
|Energy||1,527 kJ (365 kcal)|
|Dietary Fiber||1.30 g|
|Pantothenic acid||1.014 mg|
|Vitamin B6||0.164 mg|
 Rice Production
Rice can be grown in a wide range of locations and climates. In particular, rice is most closely associated with South, Southeast, and East Asia, where 90% of the world's rice is produced.
It is grown in the wettest areas in the planet to the driest deserts. It is cultivated in relatively warm places to areas of considerable cold. Rice is produced at sea level on coastal plains and in areas near river deltas to the heights of the Himalayas.
World production of rice has risen steadily from about 200 million tonnes of paddy rice in 1960 to over 607.9 million tonnes in 2004, 634.5 million tonnes in 2005, and 685 million tonnes in 2008.
Production of rice by country — 2007 (million metric ton)
|Country||million metric ton|
 Growing Rice
- Seed selection - Good seed is pure (of the chosen variety), full and uniform in size, viable (more than 80% germination with good seedling vigor), and free of weed seeds, seed-borne diseases, pathogens, insects, or other matter. Using good seed leads to lower seeding rates, higher crop emergence (more than 70%), reduced replanting, more uniform plant stands, and more vigorous early crop growth. Vigorous growth in early stages reduces weed problems and increases crop resistance to insect pests and diseases.
- Land preparation - The land to be planted is prepared to place the soil in the best physical condition for crop growth and to ensure that the soil surface is level. This is done using manual labor, with the use of animals of burden, or farm machinery. Land preparation typically involves plowing, harrowing, and leveling the field to make it suitable for crop establishment. Draft animals, such as buffalo and oxen, 2-wheel tractors or 4-wheel tractors can all be used as power sources in land preparation. The initial soil tillage can also be performed with a rotovator instead of a plow.
- Crop establishment - In direct seeding, dry seed or pre-germinated seeds and seedlings are broadcast by hand or planted by machine. This is usually done in rainfed and deepwater ecosystems. On the other hand, transplanting—transferring pre-germinated seedlings from seedbed to field—requires less seed but much more labor. This method also serves as a means of weed control.
- Water management - To ensure sufficient water, most rice farmers aim to maintain flooded conditions in their field. This is especially true for lowland rice. Naturally, water management practices will vary depending on the environment. Land preparation for flooded soils consumes more than a third of the total water required for growing rice in an irrigated production system. High water loss during land preparation is caused by water flowing through cracks in the soil. Seepage and percolation flows from rice fields are major pathways of water loss.
- Nutrient management - Ensuring that the rice plant gets the exact nutrients it needs to grow is of great importance. This is because each growth stage of the rice plant has specific nutrient needs.
- Pest management - Rodents, harmful insects, viruses, etc. each of these pests and diseases are controlled using specific strategies. Understanding the interactions among pests, natural enemies, host plants, other organisms and the environment improves pest management decisions. Understanding the ecological factors that allow pests to adapt and thrive in a particular ecosystem will help to identify weak links in the pests' life cycle and factors that can be manipulated to manage them.
- Harvesting - The harvesting activity includes cutting, stacking, handling, threshing, cleaning, and hauling. It is important to apply good harvesting methods to be able to maximize grain yield, and minimize grain damage and deterioration.
- Postharvest - Drying is the process that reduces grain moisture content to a safe level for storage. Drying is the most critical operation after harvesting a rice crop. Delays in drying, incomplete drying or ineffective drying will reduce grain quality and result in losses.The purpose of any grain storage facility is to prevent grain loss from weather, moisture, rodents, birds, insects and micro-organisms. Milling is a crucial step in post-production of rice. The basic objective of a rice milling system is to remove the husk and the bran layers, and produce an edible, white rice kernel that is sufficiently milled and free of impurities. Depending on the requirements of the customer, the rice should have a minimum of broken kernels.
 Effects of Climate change
A warming of 2°C promotes sterility in rice, reducing the yield 25% or more. A similar rise in temperature could also greatly affect wheat. Consequently, the effect of low temperature to rice production is that the growth duration of rice will be prolonged.