Cover Story

‘Mudbug season’

crawfish

Spurred by the growing popularity of Cajun cuisine and depressed rice prices, crawfish production continues to expand in the southern rice belt. Read More »

Bye, Bye Birdies

The EPA recently registered a non-lethal bird-repellent seed treatment for rice. The news traveled swiftly among producers, who have seen firsthand the damage birds can cause to newly seeded rice fields. Read More »

A man of many hats

Charley Mathews Jr. takes a detail-oriented approach to growing rice, dryer operations and industry leadership. By Vicky Boyd Editor For Charley Mathews Jr., growing a high-quality rice crop profitably and efficiently is only part of the equation. The 49-year-old Marysville, Calif., producer says he also feels compelled to repay the industry for time investments made by others before him. “The ... Read More »

New varieties look promising

CL 153 Clearfield rice

Rice breeders continue to bring outstanding options to the marketplace. By Carroll Smith One facet of production of which the U.S. rice industry is most proud is the work done by its rice breeders. They are always looking for the “next big thing” to help provide another tool for U.S. rice producers to be more competitive in the world market. ... Read More »

Gorrill Ranch

Pursuing excellence since 1918 Ralph Gorrill was born in 1884 in Oakland, Calif., the county seat of Alameda County and a teeming agricultural region. In 1917, he put his engineering background to work by helping to lay out and construct what is now part of historic 99E Highway between Durham and Nelson. While working on this project, a parcel of ... Read More »

Richard Farms

I have great memories of riding on the tractor with my daddy late at night. My parents made sure we spent time with both of them regardless of season. This sometimes meant going to meet dad. Christian and I do the same thing. I met him this afternoon to exchange papers, and I left with one less kid that I lost to his infatuation with the “big tractors!” That time is important for these three kids to not only see what we are doing but to be able to spend good interactive time with us. They come to the farm office with me, ride the tractor with dad, help bring lunches to the field and are around when we are harvesting. They do think that dad built them the biggest indoor bike rink since he built his farm shop next to our home! Read More »

Be Aggressive Up Front

Make weed control decisions now By Carroll Smith Editor Strategic herbicide choices and application timing early in the season not only provides better control of target weeds while they are small but also maximizes yield potential and quality when harvest season rolls around. Early season weed competition contributes to yield loss in the first three to four weeks after crop ... Read More »

U.S. Rice Ready to Roll

No cash bids being offered throughout the year can definitely be described as a “tight spot.” And when rice farmers find themselves in a tight spot, they don’t give up. That’s not their nature. Instead, they look for another alternative to sell their rice. Several years ago, a small group of rice farmers in southwest Louisiana, who were faced with this situation, came up with an idea to send their rice to Mexico via rail. The inspiration for this thought was a rail facility located at the Lacassine Agri-Industrial Park that originally had been intended to carry sugar. Although that venture did not pan out, the property, infrastructure, spur and truck scales were all still there. Mark Pousson, who is the manager of what is now the South Louisiana Rail Facility (SLRF) in Lacasinne, explains how Mike Strain – the Commissioner of Agriculture and Forestry in Louisiana – and Governor Jindal’s administration worked with them to “make something happen.” Read More »

Experience Pays Off

At certain times of the year, gusty winds howl across California’s Sacramento Valley, known for its rich adobe clay soil and home to the Sutter Buttes, described by many as the smallest mountain range in the world. For generations, farmers have grown rice in this area of the state, and producer Frank Rehermann is no exception. In 1972, fresh from the Navy, Rehermann began his journey as a California rice farmer with the assistance of his father-in-law, Ron Harrington. One piece of property that they farmed was owned by the Righero brothers, who originally began the process of wrestling the unleveled ground with sloughs running through it into good, farmable rice fields. Later, using an old D-7, Rehermann continued straightening the levees throughout the property to achieve greater efficiency. Today, he knows those fields well and has used that knowledge to help shape his rice production strategies. Rehermann has to be mobile because his operation is spread out, encompassing property at Live Oak, the Riceton area and the White Ranch – located on the other side of Richvale – that he began leasing from Minnie May White in 1973. In all, Rehermann farms 900 acres of rice, planting 50 percent to M-206 and the remainder to M-205. Read More »

Yorktown Planting Co.

Arkansas farmers share their recipe for success The main ingredients for their operation’s success, according to fifth- and sixth-generation Arkansas rice farmers Paul and Gil Dreher, include choosing the right varieties, investing in a grain management system, managing their water wisely and hiring a conscientious rice consultant. “My grandfather, my dad and my uncle settled in Grady, Ark., in the ... Read More »