Pokkali (ෙපාක්කාලි)

Pokkali is a popular red rice variety traditionally cultivated in Sri Lanka. The culm of plant is about 130cm in height and bears about 10 tillers per plant. This crop can be harvested within 3½ months from seeding. It is tolerant to the presence of salinity in the soil. Pokkali is used as the parent in rice varietal improvement.The potential yield is about 60 to 80 bushels per acre. Currently it is cultivated along the South Western costal belt and is a staple crop in the Hambantota and Puttalam districts where soil salinity levels are high. Scientific studies have found evidence of medicinal properties useful for the treatment of oxidative stress. Findings also indicate its ability to inhibit certain harmful bacteria. It is also found to be rich in proteins. Consumption with the bran is important in obtaining such valuable nutritional and medicinal properties.