Economic importance of food plant rice
Many plants are economically important and useful to mankind in
several ways. Based on their utility, they are broadly classified as food plants, fibre plants, oil plants and timber plants. Now, we will discuss some of the economically important plants for each category.
Food plant Rice
Its binomial is Oryza sativa. It belongs to Poaceae. It is the most
important cereal of tropical climate. This plant is an annual grass.
The inflorescence is panicle containing a number of branches, each terminating in a single grain. IR – 8, ponni, kannagi, kavery, ganga, etc. are some of the recent varieties cultivated in India.
Food plant Rice is the chief source of carbohydrates. Polished rice is less nutritive.
Straw is used as livestock feed. In Japan, alcoholic beverages are also distilled from the grains of rice.
Recently, from the husk of paddy, a cooking (rice bran oil) oil is extracted. Now, bio-diesel is obtained from rice bran oil.
Rice is the major food of half of the world’s population. Particularly
in the eastern hemisphere it is the staple food.
Rice cultivation is the onlysource of income for majority of people in our country. The uses of rice are many.
- Parched rice (pori) is crisp to eat. It is sold either salted or unsalted.
- The flattened parboiled rice is known as flaked rice. Like corn flakes, it is a very good break fast food. Flaked rice is also used for preparing different kinds of food items.
- Sake is an important alcoholic beverage in Japan. Sake is prepared
by the fermentation of rice.
- Bran is an important by-product of rice milling industry. It is used as
a cattle feed.
- Bran oil is extracted either by expression in a hydraulic press or
extra-ction with solvents. Bran oil is used as edible oil and for
preparation of vanaspathi, making soaps. It is also used in the textile industry, leather industry.
- Bran wax is a by-product in bran-oil extraction. It is used in chocolate industry and in the manufacture of lip-sticks.
- Paddy husk is used as fuel, in brick kilns. It is also used in brick
- Straw is used as cattle feed, in the manufacture of straw-boards and
for making hats, ropes, mats, etc.