Rice is the most important food crop in the

developing world and the staple food of

more than half of the world’s population. In

developing countries alone, more than 3.3

billion people depend on rice for more than

20% of their calorie need. Worldwide, there are

about 150 million ha of harvested rice land.

Annual production of rice is about 650 million

t, of which 90% is produced and consumed in

Asia. On top of actual rice production, another

116 million t of rice is projected to be needed by

2035 compared with the rice demand in 2010.