USA Rice Merchants' Association

Representing Rough and Seed Rice Merchandisers and Associates

Founded in 2005, the USA Rice Merchants’ Association is the first organization to bring rice merchandisers and related businesses together in a representative, recognized body.  Merchants are an important component of the U.S. rice industry, providing a market outlet for thousands of farmers in all six rice-producing states.
USA Rice Merchants' Logo


There are currently 27 merchant members and 7 associate members. 

Board of Directors

•  Board members are elected from amongst the merchant members of the association.
•  Board meetings are held in conjunction with USA Rice Federation annual meetings.

Meet the Chairman


Dick Ottis
El Campo, TX

Dick Ottis was born and raised in Wadsworth, Texas, where his family started growing rice around 1915.  After college, Ottis moved to Ganado, Texas, and began his career with Rice Belt Warehouse, Inc. where he has served as president and CEO since 2005.  His involvement with USA Rice includes being chairman of the USA Rice Merchants’ Association as well as a board member of the USA Rice Board of Directors.  “U.S agriculture is constantly changing,” says Ottis.  “I am pleased that my work with USA Rice helps the U.S. rice industry stay on top of its game whether it’s legislation, regulatory issues, or marketing opportunities.”

Recent News

Registered Dietitians Predict Next Nutrition Trends

Jan 25, 2018
 Todays_Dietitian_Infographic-lists top 10 super foods & diet trends
ARLINGTON, VA -- A recent survey of more than 2,050 registered dietitians (RD) revealed the food trends that will dictate consumer choices in 2018, some of which are good news for rice.  The “What’s Trending in Nutrition” survey, conducted by USA Rice consultant Pollock Communications and Today’s Dietitian, shows top trends and superfoods include an increased awareness and commitment to “clean eating” diets and the rise in popularity of ancient grains.

“Commitment to the clean eating trend bodes very well for U.S. rice,” said Paul Galvani, chairman of the USA Rice Domestic Promotion Committee.  “Consumers will be on the lookout for simple ingredients, minimally processed, and whole foods, all of which can be applied to U.S.-grown rice.  Additionally, the continued rise in popularity of ancient grains should be of note, and a positive opportunity for those U.S. rice varieties that qualify as ancient.”

According to the survey, RDs’ top recommendation for Americans to achieve an overall healthy diet is to make small changes, focus on the overall eating pattern (not a single food or nutrient), and make gradual shifts over time.  In addition, nearly 79 percent of respondents reported the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) MyPlate as the gold standard to use as a tool in nutrition education with their patients.

USA Rice is a USDA MyPlate National Strategic Partner and rice remains heavily featured on the MyPlate website.

“Insight that drives consumer purchasing decisions is vital for us as it helps shape our consumer messaging,” said Galvani.  “We are pleased to see that our work promoting U.S.-grown rice as a nutrient rich food that meets MyPlate healthy eating guidelines is not only being heard, but accepted and shared.”