Unveiling the World of Rice Exports from India: Everything You Need to Know

18 Aug, 2023

It is a known fact that India is the world’s second-largest producer of rice, and the largest exporter of rice in the world. According to preliminary estimates, India shipped $11.14 billion in rice during FY23, including basmati ($5 billion) and non-basmati ($6.14 billion).

The demand usually comes from Asian, African and European countries. With each upcoming and new harvest, the demand of rice exports from India is spiking to new heights every day.

But “How” did it all start?

Apart from being a staple food that was consumed by Indians and other countries, the actual production and profit-based trade of rice started in the Colonial Period. Under the Zamindari System, rice became a commercial product with a demanding market in British colonies and markets.

The Green Revolution began in India in the 1960s with the aim of improving food production. 

The adoption of modern techniques, including the cultivation of high-yielding rice varieties, the implementation of efficient irrigation systems, and the utilization of fertilizers and pesticides, has greatly contributed to a substantial rise in India’s rice production.

In the 1990s, the government put out rules and policies for foreign trade. It also gave farmers and exporters a variety of incentives, financial and trading help, and made the whole process less complicated.

Rice Production in India and Current Market Trends

A lot of mixed interpretations are being done by analysts regarding the situation of India in the rice export market for the year 2024. A certain decline is expected due to heavy export duty on the overall Non-Basmati variety. These might motivate the competitors like Vietnam, Thailand or Pakistan to rise up to the occasion and take the title of “Lead Exporter” of rice from India.

In recent times, increased demand for Indian rice from the North American and European regions, as well as favorable climatic circumstances, have backed the rise of the Indian rice export. The timely onset of rainfall is a primary  driver of high rise affairs. 

This also leads to more advanced productivity than in other Asian nations  similar to Thailand and Indonesia, where erratic downfall causes cataracts and failure. West Bengal, Uttar Pradesh, Andhra Pradesh, Punjab, Haryana, Tamil Nadu, Odisha, and Bihar are the top states for rice production in India.

Basmati Rice Exports from India

Basmati is one the premium varieties of rice that is grown in Himalayan region in the Indian subcontinent. It has a distinct exquisite flavour and is quite often referred to as “Biryani wale Chawal” among the Indian cuisine. What makes it so in demand is the soft, non-sticky fluffy texture with its own aroma and in turn increasing Basmati rice export from India. Basmati is found in various types: 1509, 1121, 1401, PUSA (D.B.), 1718, and so on.

The country has exported 3,948,161.03 MT of Basmati Rice to the world for the worth of Rs. 26,416.49 Crores/ 3,540.40 US$ Mill.) during the year 2021-22.

Non-Basmati Rice Exports from India

Non-Basmati rice comes in all kinds; short, long, slender, beads, round, etc. Out of 10,000 varieties of Non-Basmati Rice, maximum are produced in India due to the rich geographical factors. The major export destinations for Non-Basmati rice export from India are countries like Nepal, Africa, Senegal, Bangladesh.

India is home to different types of Non-basmati rice varieties. These include Matta, Chinigura, Ponni, Idly, Sona masoori, PR-11, IR-64, Jaya, Surti Kolam, Jeerakshala, etc.

The country has exported 17,262,235.10 MT of Non-Basmati Rice to the world for the worth of Rs. 45,652.36 Crores/ 6,124.27 USD Millions during the year 2021-22.

The Trail of Rice Exports in Last 10 Years

The last decade has seen a complete evolution and change in the rice-exporting industry. The graph has witnessed both highs and lows. A few of them are highlighted here.

2013: India emerges as a global leader in the rice export industry.

2014-2015: India faces a decline in rice export business due to intense competition and a decrease in international prices.

2016-2017: Export-promoting councils are established and policies implemented to bolster rice exports, leading to a resurgence in India’s trade activities.

2018: The Indian government introduces stricter measures for quality and quantity of rice to maintain its reputation in the international market.

2019: Despite challenges, including geographical factors and strict regulations imposed by other countries, India continues to thrive in rice exports.

COVID-19 Pandemic: Imports and exports worldwide come to a halt due to the pandemic.

Post COVID-19: The demand for rice increases globally as countries combat food scarcity caused by the pandemic. Now, the demand for rice remains steady with minimal fluctuations.

Major Rice Exporting Countries

While India holds a prominent position in the rice export market, it is important to note that several other countries are also performing well in this industry. Among the top global rice exporting nations, excluding India, are the following:


Thailand, known for its production of “Jasmine Rice” is a major exporter in the global rice market. In the past year, Thailand has exported around 21.9 million tonnes in the international market. The main destinations of rice exports from Thailand are: USA, South Africa, Benin and Hong Kong . Thailand serves Iraq, China and Cote d’Ivoire majorly.


White rice from Vietnam is an important food source as well as a key export crop for Vietnam. On average, Vietnam produces 40-46 million tonnes of white rice per year; in addition to domestic consumption, Vietnam white rice exports 25-28 million tonnes per year.


More than 60 of the rice produced in Pakistan is exported to foreign countries.


China is one the biggest exporter as well as importer of rice. In the past few years, China has imported a huge fraction of Indian rice.

Practice Adopted to Boost Rice Exports from India

In order to promote the continuous and lead supply of rice in the world, the Indian Government is undergoing thorough policy-revision. There’s a likely possibility that grain shipment restrictions will be lifted. Any situation of relaxing the export curb will cool off the benchmark prices. 

Other policies measures in favor are: 

  • Minimum Support Price – The farmer is given a minimum support price for their produce bought for export. This protects the farmer from exploitation plus makes a continuous supplier of rice.
  • Schemes on Export Promotion – A series of schemes are introduced and implemented by the Government that provides financial incentive, assistance to exporters and businessmen plus provide subsidies, as required. 
  • Trade Facilitation – In order for a seamless export procedure, the government has simplified the whole process by reducing trade barriers, diversifying markets, participation in trade fairs, expanding storage facilities and more.

Rice Supplier in India

India’s current rice production capacity not only satisfies the domestic demand but also facilitates substantial exports to international markets. This ability to meet both domestic and global requirements showcases the efficiency and scale of India’s rice industry. Combined, all of India’s rice exporters, including companies like EXPORA, have enough capacity to meet domestic demand and ship substantial quantities abroad.

However, finding dependable rice export companies in India who produce high-quality rice for import-export purposes can be a major difficulty in the global rice industry. Due to reasons such as a lack of knowledge, multiple supplier challenges, language hurdles, physical distance, and differences in business practices, locating such reliable rice suppliers in India can be challenging.

At EXPORA, we understand the importance of working closely with a network of trusted rice suppliers and manufacturers from all over India. As a leading rice export company in India, we guarantee a consistent supply of different rice varieties to cater to the diverse preferences of our customers worldwide. With our expertise and strong partnerships with reputable rice suppliers in India, we ensure reliable and top-notch rice exports from the country.


Indian rice exports have played a pivotal role in shaping the global rice trade. With its abundant production capacity, diverse range of rice varieties, and robust infrastructure, India has emerged as a key player in meeting both domestic demand and international markets. As India continues to strengthen its agricultural practices and explore new markets, its rice exports are poised to contribute significantly to the world’s food security while fostering economic growth.


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