There are more than 39,000 different rice varieties world over. Most of the world’s rice is consumed in the area in which it is grown. Only around 6% is traded internationally. However, about 10% are grown commercially. Asian farmers produce about 90% of the total. World rice production in 2007 was approximately 645 million tonnes with over 114 countries growing rice.
Nearly half the world’s 7.4 billion population eat rice as part of their staple diet and demand is expected to grow by 50 per cent by 2030. The average person in some parts of Asia eats 40-60kg each year.