From the Field Editor’s Blog

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 »

WOTUS: A Scary Proposition

Please Comment On Proposed WOTUS Rule By October 20! Arkansas congressman Rick Crawford recently noted that EPA’s new proposed rule under the Clean Water Act titled “Waters of the U.S.,” or WOTUS, is definitely cause for concern among rice farmers. And after the USA Rice Federation attended a forum in Crowley, La., on July 9, at which the EPA Region ... Read More »

You might be a rice farmer’s wife if…

After talking with a rice farmer a few days ago, he reminded me of the important part that “the other half of the team” plays in successfully running a farming operation. In his particular case, a rice farming operation. So, in sticking with the particulars, the other half of the team that we were discussing referred to rice farmers’ wives. ... Read More »

Please share your photos

I agree with the old cliché that a picture is worth a thousand words, so I am asking all of you to please send me photos of your operation as the season begins and progresses throughout the year. One caveat is to include not only the photo but also a short caption explaining what is going on. I can then ... Read More »