Nigeria has overtaken Egypt as the largest producer of rice in Africa, the director general of Africa Rice Centre said. Dr. Harold Roy-Macauley said rice cultivation in Egypt requires 1.8 billion metres of water in evaporation among other factors – Roy-Macauley noted that Nigeria has become the largest rice producer at four million tonnes a year.
The director general of Africa Rice Centre, Harold Roy-Macauley, on Monday, February 4, said that Nigeria has overtaken Egypt as largest producer of rice in Africa. He noted that while Egypt was initially producing 4.3 tonnes per year, an almost 40% production reduction in 2019 attributed to the Egyptian government decision to limit cultivated to preserve water resources. According to him, rice cultivation in Egypt requires 1.8 billion metres of water in evaporation, transpiration and irrigation each year, while Africa produces an average of 14.6 million tonnes of rough rice annually.
A letter from our Editor-in-Chief Bayo Olupohunda Roy-Macauley said there have been efforts to increase overall rice production in Africa; although, there are doubts that it will curb rice importation, as population has increased across the continent. He also said that the centre is ready to partner with Nigeria and other governments in Africa through training of farmers, extension officers and exporters on best practice’s in cultivation and post- harvest care and to understand market requirements to meet the production expectation.