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USA Rice Participates in LSU Rice Field Day; Reports to LA Rice Promotion Board
CROWLEY, LA -- More than 400 rice farmers and industry stakeholders gathered here last week for the 106th Annual Louisiana State University AgCenter Rice Research Field Day. USA Rice is an annual sponsor of the field day where growers receive the latest rice research findings and crop production recommendations from AgCenter scientists and extension personnel.

USA Rice's Bob Cummings reviewed the comprehensive report by the U.S. International Trade Commission on the global position of the U.S. rice industry.  The report, Rice: Global Competitiveness of the U.S. Rice Industry, is positive on the competitiveness of the industry, while also highlighting foreign government rice policies that could threaten U.S. competitiveness.  Cummings also talked about efforts to preserve our competitiveness in Mexico, the number one rice export market, and China, where USA Rice has been seeking access for nine years.

Following the field day activities, USA Rice staff presented the annual USA Rice Council report to the Louisiana Rice Promotion Board, the governor-appointed producer board responsible for allocating funds from the state's rice promotion check-off.

Cummings reviewed USA Rice's ongoing mechanisms for reporting activities to members and presented the financial report.  He also discussed domestic promotion activities, highlighting efforts to leverage food policy, educate registered retail dieticians, engage influential food and nutrition bloggers, educate school students, and continue outreach to foodservice.  Cummings also provided a look ahead at rice promotion plans during the 25th anniversary of September National Rice Month.  He stressed the value of having Louisiana producers involved in developing and guiding promotion programs.

Jim Guinn, vice president of international promotion, reviewed market challenges and opportunities in top U.S. export markets focusing on Mexico, Central America, European Union, United Kingdom, Colombia, and Iraq, and outlined efforts to increase rice sales in each.

Photo caption:  USA Rice's Bob Cummings

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