The AgriFutures Australia Rice Program aims to improve the profitability and sustainability of the Australian rice industry with a key focus on water use efficiency and varieties that deliver increased yield and improved eating quality.

Key components of the program

A key component of this program is rice variety breeding to further reduce demand for irrigation water and adapt to a climate that is hotter, drier and more variable.

About the industry

The Australian rice industry is a world leader in production efficiency, water use efficiency and environmental management.

Australia’s climate makes it ideal for the production of high quality medium grain rice and Australian growers produce more rice per hectare than anywhere else in the world. Australian rice achieves premium prices in world markets thanks to our research outcomes.

From paddock to plate, Australian grown rice uses 50% less water than the global average. Water use per hectare continues to decline because of the industry’s commitment to developing high yielding rice varieties that use less water, and the use of world’s best management practices.

With the capacity to produce more than 1 million tonnes of rice/ year, Australian growers play an important role in food security as rice sustains two-thirds of the world’s population.

There are around 1500 farm businesses growing rice in the Murrumbidgee Valley of NSW and the Murray Valley of NSW and Victoria.


The program is funded by statutory levies paid by industry participants which are matched dollar for dollar by the Australian Government.

RD&E plan

The Rice Industry R&D Plan 2016/17-2021/22 builds on previous five-year investment programs. A significant share of the RD&E that underpins the rice industry success has been managed by AgriFutures Australia since 1991. The Australian rice industry is strongly supportive of the RD&E program and its management by AgriFutures Australia.

The plan identifies four key objectives for RD&E:

  • Rice breeding – varietal and quality improvement
  • Development of an aerobic rice system
  • Farm productivity – crop inputs, crop protection and the farming system
  • Extension, communication and partnership development.


Michael Beer
Program Manager, Research & Innovation
02 6923 6915
0429 566 730

Ricegrowers’ Association of Australia

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Rice Program Five Year RD&E Plan 2016/17 to 2021/22

This Five Year Plan has been developed by AgriFutures Australia and industry stakeholders to outline the AgriFutures Rice Program research, development and extension (RD&E) goals and objectives until 2021/22.

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Rice Extension

Rice Extension is funded by rice growers and the Australian Government through AgriFutures Australia. Rice Extension supports the adoption of innovation and research and development outcomes in the Australian rice industry.

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Latest News and Events


New R&D Advisory Panel announced for rice industry

The new AgriFutures Australia Rice Advisory Panel will meet for the first time on Friday, 16 March 2018 in Wagga Wagga to discuss rice research investments, the new Australian Rice Leadership Program and developments of the rice research and development levy.


Women in Rice, connecting women on the land

Rice Research Australia will play host to the third consecutive Women in Rice network event on Thursday, 22 February 2018. The event aims to connect, empower and educate women involved in the rice industry and the wider farming community.


Women in Rice, Deniliquin connecting women on the land

Building on the success of the inaugural event, Women in Rice is coming to Deniliquin on Monday 27 November to connect, empower and educate women involved in the rice industry and wider farming community. 


Improving skills and enriching knowledge focus for Rice Extension

AgriFutures™ Rice Extension is central to connecting people in the Australian rice industry to ensure productive growers and a sustainable future.