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

Scholarship Winner Visits USA Rice

Feb 15, 2018
Ana Little-Sana (center) shares sushi
with USA Rice staff
 People using chopsticks to eat sushi at a restaurant
ARLINGTON, VA – If you’re Ana Little-Saña from San Diego, California, and one of your assignments as a high school senior is to research and apply for five different scholarships, you don’t just google “scholarships,” you google “fun, eclectic, unique, and weird scholarships.”  Because Little-Saña believes in heading down the road less traveled.  If she has a comfort zone, you can bet she’s going to break out of it.  

And the National Rice Month (NRM) Scholarship Video Contest she found online was definitely a departure for this student growing up in the San Diego suburbs who knew nothing about agriculture.  But with a little groundwork and a lot of creativity, Little-Saña produced an award-winning video for last year’s first ever NRM scholarship video contest.  

The money she received from Dow Agro-Sciences helped Little-Saña trade her picture perfect San Diego lifestyle for the more challenging climate and environment of Washington, DC, as she chose to study at George Washington University (GWU), located across the Potomac River from the USA Rice office here.

Little-Saña is in her second semester at GWU where she’s majoring in political science, is a Cisneros Scholar with a commitment to leadership and community service, and currently has an internship at the Truman Center for National Policy.

What little free time Little-Saña has is either spent competing on the GWU intramural water polo team or exploring the many facets of Washington DC.  “Our school doesn’t have a dining hall but we have a meal card that is accepted at a lot of different restaurants around the city,” said Saña.  “I make a point to get out of the geographic comfort zone around GWU and discover new places to eat while checking out unfamiliar parts of town.”

Earlier this week, Little-Saña added to her favorite restaurants list when she made the trek from GWU to USA Rice and shared a sushi lunch with USA Rice staff.  From her research, Little-Saña remembered that most sushi rice consumed in the U.S. is produced in her home state of California.  She also said her mother’s family, who live in Spain, has an affinity for U.S.-grown rice even though Spain has its own rice growing region.  

Another reminder that doing the unexpected and going against the grain runs in the Little-Saña family!