In India, rice is cultivated on a mass scale. Rice is one of its most important dietary staples and more than 65% of its human population relies on rice for its daily food requirement. The rice crop occupies more than 37% of the total crop area in India and accounts for almost 44% of all the food grains produced in the country.

An integral process of rice production is rice milling. And just like in any nation where rice is produced on a large scale, rice milling has been around for a very long time in India. The need for milling arises because paddy cannot be consumed in its raw form and requires suitable processing.

Owing to this huge global demand for rice, rice milling, today, is a fast-growing agro-business which you can successfully leverage for financial benefits. However, being a commercially profitable business, setting up a rice mill requires extensive knowledge and capital.

If you can manage to arrange the capital requirement, you must read further to learn how to set up a rice milling industry in India:

1. Decide the rice milling type: One pass, two step or commercial: The one pass process is one where husk and bran layers are removed in a single pass. The two step process does it separately; it requires traditional machinery and equipment and is mostly done for consumption within the local community. Commercial milling is an extensive process which requires the use of modern milling machinery. It is done mainly with a view to export the produce. Unlike the two processes mentioned above, it involves a number of processes:

  • Pre-cleaning
  • De-stoning
  • Removing husk
  • Husk aspiration
  • Paddy removal
  • Polishing
  • Whitening
  • Grading and separating
  • Blending
  • Mist polishing
  • Weighing and Bagging
  • Storing

2. Gain knowledge: learn from the experts: Before you plunge into rice milling business, it’s important for you to take a look at the environment and understand the important facts about rice milling industry in your area. Learn the pitfalls and challenges involved, have a feel of the different processes involved. Basically, learn as much as you can in the shortest time span.

3. Devise a business plan: A lot of factors are into play and you cannot enter this competitive industry without a detailed strategy. Since you’ve already acquired the basic know how, now you need to put everything into a plan. Clearly mention your business’s aims and objectives, p&l analysis, projected earnings, target market, staff requirement, competition, etc. All in all, keep a tab on everything required to get you up and running.

4. Obtain permits and licenses: To actualize the rice milling venture, you need to obtain certain licenses from the Government of India. You need to:

  • Register your business with Registrar of Companies
  • Registration with Udyog Aadhaar MSME
  • Factory license
  • Obtain Consent to Establish and Operate from Pollution Control Board
  • Obtain license as per Rice Milling Industry Act, 1958
  • VAT Registration

One must also comply with ESIC and PFA registration for the employees

If you wish to export, you also need to obtain Import-Export Code

5. Acquire land: Get your hands on a suitable location which is easily accessible.

6. Buy and Install equipment: Some of the machines in use today are:

  • Rice cleaner
  • Rice de-stoner
  • Rice Husker
  • Colour sorter
  • Paddy separator
  • Rice polisher and whitener
  • Rice grader
  • Dryer, etc.

Since it solely depends on your requirements and business scale, it’s best to consult a rice milling expert. They will also help you set up the machinery.

The final step in starting a rice milling business is acquiring the raw materials and starting with the production. Since it’s important to maintain production all through the year, it’s important that you receive guaranteed supplies. You can:

  • Start with your own rice farming
  • Buy from suppliers, i.e. farmers or farmer markets

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