Korean Government Seeks to Achieve Innovative Growth in Rice Processing Industry

Korean Government Seeks to Achieve Innovative Growth 

in Rice Processing Industry

With a basic plan to foster the rice processing industry and promote rice consumption, 

Korea’s agriculture ministry seeks to achieve KRW 17 trillion in the domestic market sales 

and USD 400 million in export value in terms of processed rice food. 

Sejong, 25 January 2024 — The Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs announced 

on 23 January a “Third Basic Plan on the Fostering of the Rice Processing Industry and the Promotion 

of Rice Consumption” to support the rice processing industry on a growth trajectory, as the industry’s 

sales in the domestic market and its export value have been on a steady increase.

The basic plan aims to expand the sales of processed rice food in the domestic market to KRW17 trillion 

and more than double the export value to USD 400 million by 2028. Under this goal, the plan focuses 

on three major objectives: (1) strengthening the support for the sales and export growth of 

promising food products, (2) expanding the demand base inside and outside South Korea, 

and (3) advancing the foundations for the growth of the rice processing industry. 

1. The first objective

The ministry will strengthen the support for the sales and export growth of ten major promising food 

products by taking advantage of four market segment expansion strategies, and thus will drive 

the dynamic growth of the rice processing industry. In particular, the ministry will establish a system 

for stable production and distribution of floury rice, and support R&D of rice food products and expansion 

of the market segment in multifaceted ways through cooperation with the food and the food service 

industries. This way, we will replace 10% (200,000 tonnes) of the domestic demand for imported 

wheat flour with the demand for floury rice.

* Ten major promising food products refer to (1) heat-to-serve processed rice and rice porridge, 

(2) a Korean-style packed lunch (“Doshirak”) and Korean seaweed rice rolls (“gimbap”), 

(3) spicy stir-fried rice cakes (“tteokbokki”), (4) frozen rice cakes, (5) rice-based spirituous liquour, 

(6) rice beverages, (7) Korean-style rice noodles, (8) mixed noodles, (9) rice bread, and (10) rice confectionery.

* The four market segment strategies refer to (1) expanding the market segment for diverse rice-based convenience foods 

(e.g. processed rice, frozen rice cakes, etc.), (2) carrying out R&D for gluten-free foods, vegan foods, senior-friendly foods, etc. 

by using a healthy image of rice, (3) developing rice processing into a flagship industry for Korean food export, 

and (4) discovering new food products appealing to young people out of traditional foods. 

2. The second objective

The ministry will enhance the stability of supply and demand of rice by expanding the global market 

segment of processed rice foods that will help promote a larger consumption of processed rice. 

The consumption target to be reached by 2028 is 720,000 tonnes from 570,000 tonnes in 2022. 

To this end, we will make efforts in the following ways: increasing the number of KGFC-labeled 

gluten-free certified companies to 100 by 2028; increasing the number of rice processing companies, 

certified gluten-free by a gluten-free certification organization in overseas countries, to 30 by 2028; 

nurturing 200 leading export companies in processed rice food to reach USD 400 million 

in export value; doubling the size of the 1,000-won breakfast programmes, a policy to provide 

breakfast for college students at a cheap price of KRW 1,000; and expanding the project of 

helping children and young people maintain healthy eating habits. 

3. The third objective

The ministry will solidify the foundations for growth of the rice processing industry and thus improve 

the industry’s global competitiveness. To make this possible, we will build an area for rice cultivation 

where floury rice will be cultivated for a processing purpose, and provide support for 

contract-based rice cultivation. We will also build an area to grow a Korean variety of indica rice 

to meet the demand from rising consumption of long-grain rice and an increasing number of 

non-Korean residents living in the nation. Our support will also go to expanding the fund 

for raw materials purchase and facility renovation and to investing in R&D for ten key 

techniques and technologies to produce processed rice food.