Oryza sativa holds a unique position among domesticated crop species as it is one of the most important staple foods globally. Without rice, the day will not be fulfilled in most of the Asian countries. Requirement of rice for consumption is anticipated from 450 million tons in 2011 to about 490 million tons in 2020 and to around 650 million tons by 2050 globally. To meet the food demands, it has been estimated that 40 per cent more rice is needed to be produced by 2050 for the ever increasing population. Increasing incidences of both biotic and abiotic stresses under changing climate are the major constraints in rice production to meet the rapidly escalating population. Crop improvement in rice will not be completed lacking of grain quality analysis. Rice grain quality embraces storage, milling, market quality, cooking and eating quality and nutritive quality of grain. Demand for high quality rice has increased globally in recent years and continues to trend upward due to the taste preferences. Since, consumer demand in Asia and all over the world are diverse due to varied demographics and culture, defining uniform attributes to grain quality becomes more challenging. The Middle Eastern consumers highly prefer long grain, well milled rice with strong aroma while European consumers prefer long grain non aromatic rices. In Asia, Chinese consumers prefer semi-aromatic rice to pure aromatic rice. Cooked kernel elongation is the most important quality traits, which differentiate the highly valued basmati rice from other rice types. Kernel elongation after cooking is an important character of fine rice and the most rice consumers prefer lengthwise elongation.
Part of the book: Plant Breeding