First of all they eat real rice and not the crap most Americans think is rice.
Huge difference in taste and nutrients. Rice is easy to grow, store, and cook.
I was being a bit snarky...
personally, I’ll stick to egg noodles, black beans, oatmeal, stuff like that stored in bulk.
I tend to think the popularity of rice has to do more with how many people worldwide live in coastal zones that make rice agriculture easy.
Doesn’t something like 35% of the worlds population live with 100 miles of the ocean? Maybe not that much, but it’s still a huge number.