It wast the interaction with the community members of Nongkynrih, Laskein, Jaintia Hills District, that led to the conceptualization and creation of the “Rice Network”. It was a decision that also stemmed from the fact that rice happens to be the staple food of all the communities of North East India.
Jaintia hills alone is home to 100 varieties of rice. Of these, 32 varieties were displayed by the Nongkynrih community during Mei Ram-ew 2014. The potential of local rise as means to enhance nutritional security and market independence can not be ignored and so steps are being taken to survey and study, through the network, indigenous rice varieties and their agricultural significance.