USA Rice is Sustainable Agriculture
Protect * Preserve * Produce
USA Rice continually works with different industry sectors to reduce the carbon footprint for rice and detail the contribution rice farms make to wildlife habitat and biodiversity.Environmental Indicators Report: Farmers Produce More Rice with Fewer Inputs
Report Shows U.S. Rice Industry Meeting Growing Demand with Reduced Environmental Impact
A study commissioned by The Rice Foundation and released in December 2010 by the USA Rice Federation shows that U.S. rice production has become increasingly efficient on a national level over a 20-year period.
U.S. Rice Resource Efficiency and Sustainability Metrics, is the first-of-its-kind rice sustainability study. IHS Global Insight conducted the analysis. Among the study’s major findings:
"The study is an important first look at the sustainability of U.S. rice production and provides a benchmark for the industry," USA Rice Federation Sustainability Task Force Chairman Jennifer James said. James, a rice grower from Arkansas, believes the ongoing challenge for the rice industry will be to continue to produce more rice that is both sustainable and profitable for rice farmers in order to feed a growing global population.
Noting the positive contribution that rice makes to wildlife and biodiversity, the study encourages future research in this and other areas such as water management and how farm management practices influence soil emissions. The report concludes that the U.S. rice industry is moving toward meeting increasing demand while achieving a reduced environmental impact per hundred pounds of rice produced.
Rice Fields as Wildlife Habitat
The Louisiana State University (LSU) AgCenter contributed this photograph of a juvenile alligator in a rice field. Rice fields provide a nursery, resting or feeding ground for animals such as alligators, fish, frogs nearly every kind of waterfowl, that take advantage of the wetland habitat created by rice farmers.
Wading Birds in a Louisiana Rice Field
LSU AgCenter also provided these photographs of wading birds in rice fields. Rice is an important crop for wading birds and water birds, which use flooded rice fields primarily for foraging, but some, including rare species, use rice fields for nesting. At left, a flock of dowitchers in a flooded rice field. At right, a dowitcher and sandpipers in a Louisiana rice field.