Skip to content
Markets
Supply Squeeze

World’s Food Supply Faces New Threat From Lack of Rain in India

  • Total rice planted area has shrunk 13% due to lack of rainfall
  • Traders are concerned that India may restrict rice exports
Workers clean rice paddy at a wholesale market in the outskirts in New Delhi.
Workers clean rice paddy at a wholesale market in the outskirts in New Delhi.Photographer: Anindito Mukherjee/Bloomberg
Updated on

Rice could emerge as the next challenge for global food supply as a shortage of rain in parts of India, by far the world’s biggest exporter, has caused planting area to shrink to the smallest in about three years. 

The threat to India’s rice production comes at a time when countries are grappling with soaring food costs and rampant inflation. Total rice planted area has declined 13% so far this season due to a lack of rainfall in some areas, including West Bengal and Uttar Pradesh, which account for a quarter of India’s output.