Friday, March 31, 2023
Home Agribusiness Tips On Post-harvest Handling Of Rice

Tips On Post-harvest Handling Of Rice

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By Nelson Mandela Muhoozi

Producing good quality rice grains requires using appropriate post-harvest techniques and it helps reduce processing and grain-storage losses.

According to Razaki Omia from Omia Agribusiness Development Group, ensuring each stage of rice post-harvest processing is carefully managed is very important for producing high quality rice and seeds.

“Do not regard each stage as un-important and not necessary for your attention and management,” he said.

If crops are not dried and stored appropriately by sensing unseen moisture and crop temperature, Omia said the storage stability of rice, which is better than other crops, cannot be adequately demonstrated.

He said, “This ultimately causes poor results including the generation of substantial amounts of damaged rice, and while taste also deteriorates, milling yield decreases, edible amounts do not improve, and farmer motivation for producing rice deteriorates.”


(i) Harvest rice at the right maturity time that is when the rice straws have turned brown and at least 80-85% of the grains have hardened and ripened

(ii) The best time, therefore, is when the rice grains feels firm between the teeth

Handling of the harvested rice

(i) Collect the harvested rice and spread it on a tarpaulin or mat to avoid grain loss and contamination with soil, mud or stones

(ii) Thresh the rice immediately after harvesting, using hands or machines

(iii) Never heap harvested rice on straws in large mounds. This will cause heat build-up, cracking and mould growth.


(i) Dry rice grains immediately after threshing to a moisture content of 11-12%

(ii) Store in rodent or vermin proof storage facilities or hermetic bags or SMART metallic silos

(iii) Use modified environment (Carbon dioxide and heat)

(iv) Use fumigants such as (Aluminium Phosphide)


A good storage facility should be; easy to clean, provide protection from rodents, birds and other animals, waterproof and moisture proof and well-aerated, protect the grains against variations of temperature and humidity.

It should also have provision for periodical inspection where appropriate, have provision for application of pesticides or fumigation where appropriate and be located away from possible sources of contamination such as animal and human waste, kilns, flour mills, and bone-crushing mills, garbage rumps, tanneries, slaughterhouses and chemical industries.

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