Rice is best stored as paddy because the husk provides some protection against insects and prevent grain quality deterioration. A safe or hermetic storage system prevents the grain from getting wet after drying and also gives protection from insects, rodents, and birds.

Rice can be stored for longer periods if:

  • Moisture content is maintained at less than 14% for grain and 12% for seed;
  • Grain is protected from insects, rodents, and birds; and
  • Grain is protected from re-entering of moisture by rain or from the surrounding air.

A rule of thumb for seed is that the life of the seed is halved for every 1% increase in moisture content or a 5°C increase in storage temperature above recommended levels.

Rice storage systems

Bag storage system

  • Bags should not be stacked higher than 4 meters.
  • Bags should be stacked under a roof, in a shed or under water-proof tarpaulins.
  • A one-meter gap should be kept between and around stacks.
  • Bags should be stacked on pallets above ground.
  • Bags should be stacked so that fumigation can be undertaken, if necessary.

Bulk storage

Hermetic or sealed storage