Rice is an edible cereal grain that grows on a grass plant. Known scientifically by the name Oryza sativa, rice is a versatile food that is eaten by roughly one-half of the world’s population.
Cooked by boiling, rice can be eaten on its own or in an extremely large range of dishes. Common dishes rice is used in include Asian side and main dishes, Middle Eastern cuisines, and even desserts.
Rice can also be turned into noodles, breakfast cereals, and alcoholic beverages.
The above are all things you probably already know about rice. Something you might not know though is which country eats it the most. With it being so popular all over the world, this can be hard to work out.
Luckily for you, we have all the answers for you. In today’s post, we’re going to share them. Keep reading if you want to learn more!
Which Country Eats Rice The Most?
Let’s start by answering the main question you came here looking for the answer to. The country that eats the most rice is China. China eats more than 142,700 metric tons of rice every year.
Astonishingly, this accounts for almost 30% of global rice consumption. At least 65% of the Chinese population considers rice to be a staple food.
To put this into perspective, it is believed that the average Chinese person eats up to 600 grams of rice a day. That works out at 76kg a year. A lot of Chinese people will eat rice three times a day.
The second place is taken by India. Rice consumption in India continues to grow year after year. Currently, India’s annual rice consumption sits at 97,350 metric tons a year.
Like China, more than half of the Indian population considers rice to be a staple food. Indians also commonly eat rice three times a day.
Which Countries Produce The Most Rice?
More than 750 million tonnes of rice is produced globally every year. When we look at where the most rice is produced, we start to get a better idea of why it is so popular amongst Asian countries.
China is also the biggest producer of rice. In fact, rice production in China has played a huge part in China’s economy becoming one of the fastest growing.
China produces more than 200 million tonnes of rice every year, with this number continuing to rise. This accounts for 28% of total rice production worldwide.
Once again, India finds itself in second place. India produces more than 170 million tonnes of rice every year. Again, this figure continues to rise. This works out at 23% of the world’s rice production.
It can’t be a coincidence that the top two consumers of rice also produce the most.
Why Is Rice So Popular In Asian Countries?
When we look at the top 10 consumers of rice, 9 of them can be found in Asia. The main reason for this is because of how easy it is to grow rice across the continent.
Take China for example. China’s rice production thrives because the wet rural environment makes it so much easier to grow it. This is the case with most of Asia.
In fact, 90% of the world’s rice production is found in Asia. Another reason rice is so popular in Asia is because of its history.
Rice has been cultivated on the continent for more than 10,000 years. As a result, Asian people tend to eat and even grow a fair amount of rice.
Finally, rice is also extremely popular in Asian countries because it is so versatile. Rice can be used to make a wide range of dishes or eaten on its own. It’s also very filling and satisfying.
What Types Of Rice Are Most Commonly Eaten In Asia?
There are over 40,000 different varieties of rice found around the world. As a result, the types of rice eaten by different people vary massively. Sometimes, the most popular type of rice eaten in a country isn’t even rice that comes from that country.
For example, one of the most popular types of rice in China is Jasmine rice from Thailand. Rice in Asia is used for stews, curries, and meat and vegetable dishes. There are primarily five types of rice eaten in Asia.
We’ve listed them below:
1. Jasmine Rice From Thailand
One of, if not the most popular rice in Asia is Jasmine rice. Grown and harvested in Thailand, this rice is a medium-grain type of rice that’s famous for its strong floral flavor. This flavor comes from the sweet jasmine flower.
Also known by the name Khao daw mall, jasmine rice is a white-grain rice that’s sticky, moist, and very good at soaking up spices.
2. Broken Rice From Vietnam
In Vietnamese, broken rice is known by the name Com Tam. Whilst most countries like to eat complete and whole grains, the Vietnamese love to use broken grains.
This rice is produced from leftover white rice that has been deemed imperfect during the milling and drying process.
Instead of throwing the grains away, they are made into broken rice. This rice is an essential part of Vietnamese cuisine. It is widely eaten by all Vietnamese people but is more popular with poorer laborers.
It has a similar taste and texture to normal rice but it is smaller.
3. Basmati Rice From India
Basmati rice is one of the most popular types of rice eaten around the world. As you can imagine, it is also extremely popular in Asia.
Commonly used in pilaf and biryani dishes, basmati rice is one of the best rice we can serve with curries.
This rice has a fluffy texture and a fragrant scent. This is because the skinny grains stay separate from each other, making it easier for flavors to soak into each grain.
In terms of flavor, this rice is nutty and light.
4. Black Rice From All Over Asia
Black rice is grown all over Asia. Once called the “forbidden rice”, black rice was once used to cure kidney, liver, and stomach problems. As you can tell from the name, it is jet black in color.
It was called the forbidden rice because noblemen in ancient China took control of it. The grains have a nutty and slightly sweet flavor and a fluffy texture.
This rice is also high in nutrients and antioxidants.
5. Koshihikari Rice From Japan
The Japanese are known for their love of rice. So much so, the country has more than 300 different varieties of rice.
The most popular and common is Koshihkari rice. A type of white rice, Koshihkari rice, is used for almost anything.
It has a shiny grain and an almost sticky texture. It is also quite starchy. This makes it much easier to use when making sushi.
Is Rice Healthy?
Seeing as though rice is so regularly consumed across Asia, it seems only right to finish by talking about how healthy rice is.
Rice is a healthy food. It is a rich source of carbohydrates and food that can act as the body’s main energy source. Rice will help keep you full all day and ensure you feel energized.
On top of that, most types of rice are a good source of vitamins and nutrients. This includes fiber, selenium, magnesium, vitamin B, and manganese.
The country that eats the most rice is China, where more than 140,000 metric tons of rice are eaten every year. India sits in second place with an annual consumption close to 100,000 metric tons.
In fact, 9 of the top 10 countries that consume the most rice can be found in Asia. This is because of how much it is grown, its affordability, and its versatility.
Now you’ve made your way through this post, you should know a lot more about the world of rice. You might even feel hungry.