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Rice is the second highest worldwide production after maize (corn). Since maize is mostly grown for purposes other than human consumption, rice is the most important grain for human consumption. It provides more than one-fifth of the calories consumed worldwide by humans. There are more than 40,000 varieties of rice that grow on every continent except on Antarctica.

Rice background

Rice is the seed of the grass species Oryza sativa (Asian rice) or Oryza glaberrima (African rice). As a cereal grain, it is the most widely consumed staple food for a large part of the world's human population, especially in Asia. It is the agricultural commodity with the third-highest worldwide production (rice, 741.5 million tonnes in 2014), after sugarcane (1.9 billion tonnes) and maize (1.0 billion tonnes).[1]