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Largest Rice-Producing Countries

Rice

Rice, the principal food source for more than half of the world’s population, is grown worldwide, with Asia accounting for nearly all of it. There are over 40,000 variants worldwide. Rice comes in various varieties, including long-grain, Basmati, wild, and jasmine. Humans consume 95% of the world’s rice. Rice is made by boiling and can be eaten on its own, but it is more commonly served with main courses. 

China, India, Indonesia, and Bangladesh are the top rice-consuming countries. The United States is a significant exporter, with global sales accounting for approximately half of all rice produced. However, China is the world’s leading rice producer, followed by India.

China had 146.7 million metric tons of milled rice in the 2019/2020 crop year, more than any other country. India ranked second with 118.9 million metric tons of milled rice in that crop year.

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Here is a chart of the top 10 countries that produce the maximum rice.

1. China

China is the world’s leading rice producer. It’s also the first country to create hybrid rice varieties., which is a cross between two different types of plants. China produced around 211 million metric tons of milled rice in the previous year. The crop is largely farmed along the Yangtze River in provinces such as Jiangsu, Anhui, Hubei, and Sichuan, where about 95 percent of China’s rice is grown using traditional methods.

However, the Chinese government and officials will need to build more sustainable and productive rice farming practices due to several variables such as climate change, labor scarcity, and the abuse of chemicals and fertilizers. Rice is the leading food for around 65 percent of China’s population.

More than 90% of China’s rice is irrigated, and some locations may produce two crops per year. China is the world’s largest rice grower, accounting for 30% of worldwide rice output. At 6.5 tonnes per hectare, it produces the best rice yields in Asia. Rice is produced all over the country and has been domesticated in the Yangtze River Valley and Yellow River. 

2. India

India’s total rice production in 2021 was around 158 million metric tons. It is also the world’s second-largest rice consumer, with an estimated 100 million metric tons annual rice consumption. West Bengal is India’s leading rice-producing state.

With 4.4 million tons exported in 2019, India is the world’s top Basmati rice supplier. Rice is consumed by more than 65 percent of the Indian population, and rice farming employs more than 50 million people. In terms of rice output, India is ranked second in the world.

West Bengal is India’s leading rice-producing state. Rice is grown on over half of the country’s arable land. In 2016, the state produced around 15.75 million tonnes of rice across a cultivable area of 5.46 million hectares.

India is the world’s second-biggest rice producer and the world’s largest rice exporter. Production grew from 53.6 million tons to 53.6 million tons. As of 2021/2022, India has a global rice export volume, with 18.75 million metric tons.

With around 6.5 million metric tons of rice exported worldwide in that year, Vietnam was the second-largest rice exporter.

3. Indonesia

Indonesia is the third-largest rice producer in the world. The seed is mostly produced in the Indonesian islands of Java and Sumatra, with Sumatra accounting for roughly 60% of total production. Rice is grown by around 77 percent of all farmers who harvest with a sickle or knife.

Indonesia produced 77 million metric tons of rice in 2021. Rice is grown by smallholder farmers rather than state-owned enterprises, with smallholder farms accounting for 90% of Indonesia’s rice production. Indonesia produced roughly 55.16 million tons of paddy in 2020.

Rice production is largely concentrated on the islands of Java and Sumatra, with Java accounting for approximately 60% of the total output. Rice is produced in both the lowlands and the highlands of Indonesia, with the upland crop usually being rainfed and receiving little fertilizer.

With paddy production of more than 50 million tonnes in 2003 and a planted area of more than 11.5 million ha, Indonesia is one of the world’s leading rice producers. Since 1980, Indonesia has had the highest national rice yield in tropical Asia.

4. Bangladesh

Bangladesh’s milled rice production was estimated to be 52 million tonnes in 2021. Rice accounts for half of the country’s agricultural GDP and one-sixth of Bangladesh’s national income, and it is the main meal for around 135 million people across the country.

Bangladesh exports rice to over 100 countries, with Sri Lanka purchasing 50,000 tonnes in 2017. Most of Bangladesh’s rice is grown in the Aman, Boro, and Aus regions. Bangladesh produced roughly 10.59 million tons of rice in 1971 when the country’s population was just around 70.88 million.

However, to feed its 135 million inhabitants, the country presently produces roughly 25.0 million tons of grain. As a result, Bangladesh will require around 27.26 million tons of rice in 2020. with a rice production of 3.6 million tonnes, Bangladesh is the world’s third-largest producer of rice, behind China and India, which produce 14.6 crore tonnes and 11.6 crore tonnes, respectively.

Indonesia was previously ranked third, with 3.49 crore tonnes of rice produced. Bangladesh has been growing rice output for many years and is now substantially rice self-sufficient. As a result, rice imports in the country fell from almost 1 million t in 1995 to just 0.017 million t in 2009 but rose to 0.66 million t in 2010.

5. Vietnam

Vietnam is the fifth-largest rice producer in the world. The crop is grown in the lush Mekong and Red River deltas in the north and south. Rice agriculture employs 80% of the provinces surrounding the Mekong Delta.

Rice is grown on over 82 percent of Vietnam’s fertile land. The country produced 43 million metric tons of rice in 2021, exporting 6.6 million metric tons to the Philippines, China, and several African nations.

Rice production has steadily increased from 27 million tons in 1997 to around 46 million tons in 2017, a 66 percent growth in less than two decades. For thousands of years, rice has been farmed in Vietnam. Most of Vietnam’s rice is farmed in southern Vietnam’s Mekong River Delta.

Rice production in the Mekong and Red River deltas of Vietnam is critical to the country’s food supply and economy. Rice is considered a “gift from God” and is a staple of the national cuisine.

The Mekong River and its tributaries are a significant waterway in Southeast Asia. With around 6.5 million metric tons of rice exported worldwide in that year, Vietnam was the second-largest rice exporter in 2021/2022.

6. Myanmar

Myanmar produces the sixth-largest amount of rice globally, 25.67 million tons. Rice is the most significant crop in the country, and it is farmed on around 8 million hectares or over half of the country’s arable land. Rice production in the country climbed from over 18 million tons in 1995 to over 22 million t in 2010.

is grown mainly in the Ayeyarwady, Bago, and Yangon delta regions due to the river system that runs through them. These three areas make up 33.59 percent, 17.72 percent, and 10.07 percent of the total harvestable area, respectively. Myanmar exports around 1 million tonnes of rice to 50 countries, accounting for 70% of all exports. 

7. Thailand

Thailand ranked seventh with a production of 25.26 million tons per year. Rice is farmed in all of Thailand’s provinces. In addition, Thailand is known for growing jasmine rice, which is prized for its stickiness and popcorn aroma worldwide.

Around 100,000 tons of rice are sent to Japan, where it is used to produce crackers and wine. In 2020, Thailand aimed to export 7-8 million tonnes of rice. Rice cultivation accounted for around 15% of Thailand’s agricultural GDP. The country produced 20.34 million metric tons of milled rice in 2018/19.

8. Philippines

In 2018, the Philippines ranked seventh in the world for rice output. In Luzon, Western Visayas, Southern Mindanao, and Central Mindanao, rice is abundantly grown. Rice production has risen steadily over the last two decades, from 12 Mt in 1999 to 19 Mt in 2008. In 2020, the Philippines produced the most rice globally, at 19.44 million metric tons.

Central Luzon (18.7%), western Visayas (11.3%), Cagayan Valley (11%), Ilocos area (9.8%), and Bicol region are the largest rice-producing regions in the Philippines (6.8 percent ). The Philippines has 4.2 million hectares of rice fields and produces 11.2 million metric tons of milled rice, only enough to feed 90% of the people.

Rice is grown by many farmers, but almost everyone also consumes it. In the Philippines, rice farming is an essential part of the country’s food supply and economy. The Philippines is the world’s eighth-largest rice producer, with 2.8 percent of worldwide rice production.

9. Brazil

Rice production in Brazil was reached 10.6 million metric tons in the crop year 2021, up marginally from 10.45 million tons the previous year. Except for Asia, Brazil is the leading rice producer and consumer. It produces about 15 million tons of unmilled rice per year to satisfy the consumption needs of 12.14 million tons.

Brazil is the leading rice grower in Latin America and the Caribbean. Brazil, on the other hand, is a significant rice importer. The state of Rio Grande is the primary producer of rice. Rice is grown in every state in Brazil that has a tropical environment.

According to the US Department of Agriculture, around 75% of the Brazilian crop, or 9 million tons, is collected in the country’s south. Brazil, the world’s fifth-largest country, is located in east-central South America and covers about half of the continent.

10. Pakistan

Pakistan is the world’s tenth-largest rice producer. Pakistan produced 10.412 million tonnes of rice in 2021, ranking 10th among the world’s top rice producers. Pakistan had 6.7 million tonnes in 2016/17, of which around 4 million were exported, primarily to neighboring nations, the Middle East, and Africa.

Punjab is the world’s most excellent rice-producing region, and between the Ravi and Chenab rivers is the “Kalar” tract, home to the world’s most famous Basmati rice. The rice-harvesting areas in various production zones are shown in the table below. Hafizabad is renowned as the “City of Rice” and is home to the world’s largest rice market, where the following types of rice are grown: 385 Basmati rice.

Rice is Pakistan’s second most important cash crop, and the country enjoys a competitive advantage in the production of aromatic basmati rice. Rice exports from Pakistan are primarily sent to China ($266 million), Kenya ($162 million), the United Arab Emirates ($145 million), Saudi Arabia ($108 million), and the United Kingdom ($92.3 million).

In 2018 and 2019, the fastest-growing export markets for Pakistani rice were China ($107 million), Mozambique ($52.2 million), and the United Arab Emirates ($50.8 million). Punjab and Sindh are Pakistan’s two biggest rice-producing provinces.

Nearly all of the rice produced in the country is grown in these two regions. Due to its unique agro-climatic and soil conditions, Punjab has 100% of the country’s basmati rice.

Epilogue

Agricultural plant commodities are produced (and consumed) in a wide range of locations. Along with the climate and matching types of vegetation, a country’s economy impacts agricultural production.

Some products are concentrated in a few nations; for example, China, the world’s biggest producer of wheat and ramie fiber in 2013, produced 6% of the world’s ramie fiber but only 17% of the world’s wheat. The top producers’ rankings vary more frequently for products with more equally spread production.

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