Basmati rice is one of the most fragrant rice varieties in the world. They are popular for their quality and feel. They are slender, aromatic and have incredible taste. This makes them quite popular across the world. But do you know where is basmati rice from? What are its origins and what makes it tick?
What Makes Basmati Rice So Popular?
Basmati rice is a superior quality, long-grained rice that is characterized by its strong aroma and unparalleled taste. One of its key distinguishing factors is that it is off-white or slightly golden and not stark white, as one would believe it to be.
There are several variants of basmati rice available in the market. These include basmati 370, basmati 385 and basmati D-98. there are a lot of other varieties as well that are regularly grown and exported. A small fraction of it is also being produced organically.
India: The Land Of Basmati Rice
India can be called the land of basmati rice as it produces nearly two-thirds of the world’s supply. India also accounts for about 65% of international trade when it comes to basmati rice. Basmati rice is considered to be grown in India for centuries.
Several states in the country have a GI tag for basmati rice production. This tag makes gives it a certification of authenticity and when you get GI-tagged basmati rice, you can be assured you are getting the right thing.
This is particularly important at a time when fake products and duplications are replete in the markets, both domestic and international. The GI-approved states are mostly in the northern part of the country and include Uttar Pradesh, Punjab, Himachal Pradesh, Haryana, Uttarakhand.
Countries such as Saudi Arabia, Iran and UAE are among India’s biggest export markets and take rice worth millions every year.
Which Other Countries Grow Basmati Rice?
Though India accounts for the majority of basmati rice production in the world, other countries also have their variants of basmati rice. These include Pakistan and Nepal predominantly. In fact, Pakistan accounts for 35% of the world’s exports and together, India and Pakistan currently dominate the basmati rice market.
The Kalar bowl in Pakistan is the key area that is known for basmati rice production, thereby making the Punjab province in Pakistan the main cultivator of rice. Pakistan-grown basmati rice is pretty popular in the European markets, with the majority being exported in that area.
Other areas in the world that also cultivate basmati rice include Nepal and Sri Lanka. The latter is known for its red basmati rice variant that is grown in the country in small quantities.
Indonesia is another country that also grows basmati rice but it has its own variant. It is called baroma and is quite popular among locals and for exports. It is a hybrid between a Pakistani basmati rice variant and a local rice variety, giving Indonesian basmati rice its unique texture, flavor and market.
Benefits Of Basmati Rice
Have you wondered what is it about this rice that makes it the king of all rice varieties and contributes to its immense popularity? To begin with, it has a distinct and far superior aroma and texture. Secondly, it is lower in arsenic that is found in many rice varieties. This makes it a healthier option.
Brown basmati rice is also known to help people who have type-2 diabetes keep their sugar levels in check.
The Final Word
Basmati rice is one of the most popular rice variants predominantly grown in India which is known for its superior taste and quality.
You might also be interested in our article; 13 Interesting Facts About Rice.