From the Field Editor’s Blog

LSU AgCenter reorganizes parish agents to improve sustainability

Kurt Guidry

“Necessity is the mother of invention,” so the proverb goes. Faced with tight budgets, the Louisiana State University AgCenter needed to take a hard look at Extension agents in its parishes and invent a more sustainable way to provide services to its clientele. “Our hope is to get to a level from a budget standpoint where we’re much more sustainable,” ... Read More »

Where’s the rice?

I recently attended the Field to Vase Dinner held on the grounds of the California State Capitol in Sacramento. Not only was the event a feast for the senses, but it also allowed California’s cut flower industry to showcase its incredible array of flowers, sustainability and family run operations. As part of the dinner, attendees  feasted on lamb produced just ... Read More »

The 4 R’s: Reading, writing, ‘rithmetic and rice

branding demonstration at Union Livestock Inc.

I recently sat in on one day of the San Joaquin County Farm Bureau’s four-day Ag in the Classroom program. Now in its 32nd year, it is designed to educate the educators about the importance of ag in the county and of the job opportunities the industry can offer students down the line. Many of the participants, who grew up ... Read More »

Crawfish: The ultimate recyclers


When you think about it, crawfish are nature’s ultimate recyclers. Because of that, the red crustacean complements the rice industry’s already strong sustainability story. Sustainability is like a three-legged stool comprising economic, environmental and social benefits. If you’re missing even one of those, the stool falls over. Most of the crawfish grown in South Texas and Louisiana are part of ... Read More »

California State Water Project makes initial allocations

San Luis Reservoir

The California Department of Water Resources announced an initial 2016 water allocation of 10 percent for customers of the State Water Project. The allocation could be increased or decreased, depending on precipitation received this winter. The Department of Water Resources, which operates the project, will make monthly announcements about the supply situation. Read More »

More Bang For Your Buck!

For as long as I remember, the USA Rice Outlook Conference has been an outstanding meeting where all segments of the industry gather to hear the latest developments pertaining to U.S. rice from the field, the Hill, domestic and foreign markets and all points in between. The 2015 meeting, which will be held Dec. 9-11 in New Orleans, La., is ... Read More »

2015 Rice Awards Nominations Open

It’s that time again! We are inviting you to nominate rice industry leaders for the 2015 Rice Awards, sponsored by Horizon Ag, Rice Farming magazine and the USA Rice Federation. The categories are Rice Farmer of the Year, Rice Industry Award and Rice Lifetime Achievement Award. The recipients will be honored at an awards luncheon at the USA Rice Outlook Conference in New Orleans, La., in December. The deadline for nominations is June 30, 2015. Read More »

Blanca Isabel Purple Rice: Laissez Les Bons Temps Rouler!*

I first heard of what Blanca Isabel long-grain purple rice is all about while visiting with south Louisiana rice producer Fred Zaunbrecher last fall. This variety was developed by LSU AgCenter’s Dr. Milton Rush in 1998, while he was looking for a rice variety with a natural resistance to sheath blight. While drafting an article about Blanca Isabel for the January issue of Rice Farming (, I spoke with the late Dr. Rush’s daughter, Claudia. She and her family operate Rush Rice Products, LLC, in Baton Rouge, La., where they market and sell Blanca Isabel. Go to to check it out. Claudia graciously sent me a bag of Blanca Isabel to sample for myself. Last night, I cooked up a pot and used it in a chicken casserole dish. You cook it the same way you do regular rice (2 cups water, 1 cup rice, etc.). The water turns a deep purple color, and in about 18 minutes the rice is ready. I have to say it is delicious. Read More »

‘Tis the season!

The 2014 rice production season has come to a close, while hunting season, the holidays and planning for 2015 are in full swing. An important part of the planning process for next year is attending winter meetings to stay apprised of industry issues, new products and variety/hybrid offerings, and Farm Bill decisions that will affect your operation for the next ... Read More »

Spaghetti & Rice: Trick or Treat, Give Me Something Good to Eat!

I’ve never been much of a cook, but I am a creative, which means when you get in a situation for which you have no explanation, you just make something up. Let’s consider Halloween 2014. While trying to answer the door and pass out treats, I’m looking for an easy recipe for supper. Spaghetti. If you can’t do anything else, ... Read More »