Rice is a major staple of a large segment of consumers. Improving digestibility and increasing nutritional benefit while decreasing undesirable components will enhance the value of rice worldwide.
Starch Structural Effects on the Digestibility of Cooked Rice.
R. G. Gilbert et al., CFW Plexus Webcasts, 2012.
Evaluation of Antioxidant, Lipid, and Protein Fractions of Accessions of Oryza Species.
C. Bergman et al., Cereal Chemistry 88:283, 2011.
Rice quality involves a multitude of factors, including the detection and analysis of sensory, physiochemical, and rheological properties.
Use of the Mixolab in Predicting Rice Quality.
L. Xie et al. Pages 99-103 in Mixolab: A New Approach to Rheology, AACCI, 2013.
Rice Aroma and Flavor: A Literature Review.
E. T. Champagne, Cereal Chemistry 85:445, 2008.
Effects of Postharvest Elevated-Temperature Exposure on Rice Quality and Functionality.
A. A. Ambardekar and T. J. Siebenmorgen, Cereal Chemistry 89:109, 2012.
Alejandra Billiris is a Ph.D. student in the Food Science Department of the University of Arkansas, and is also a member of the university's Rice Processing Program (RPP). She has worked at the Technological Laboratory of Uruguay (LATU) since April 2005 as a food analyst and is now on leave to pursue her Ph.D. degree. The projects on which she is working are intended to improve rice processing operations and support the rice industry. Her goals at LATU and the Ph.D. program are similar, as the Rice Processing Program of the University of Arkansas works very closely with the rice industry, including producers, processors, and end-users of rice.
Chalkiness and fissuring will continue to present tremendous challenges in the future. There is also the issue of toxic heavy metals, such as arsenic, present in rice; measures such as reducing rice consumption and washing rice before cooking are not sufficient to address this. Finally, the accumulation of rice straw and hulls requires research towards finding a value-added use to reduce waste accumulation.
The evaluation of "rice quality" depends on the requirements of the end user, so there are varying definitions. Rice is consumed largely as intact kernels—usually as white rice, where most of the bran has been removed by milling—rather than as a ground product. Thus, size, shape, color, appearance, functionality, and cooking properties are important quality characteristics that must be addressed. Two of the most challenging quality issues facing the rice industry today are fissuring and chalkiness of kernels.