USA Rice Millers' Association

Representing the U.S. Rice Milling Industry Since 1899

Founded in 1899, the USA Rice Millers' Association (RMA) is one of the oldest agribusiness trade organizations in America.  RMA membership encompasses virtually all of U.S. rice milling capacity, including farmer-owned cooperatives and privately owned mills, with mill members in Arkansas, California, Florida, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, and Texas.  Associate members located in the U.S. and around the world,  include end users, exporters, shippers, and other businesses allied with the rice trade.

RMA membership supports government affairs work as well as international market access and trade policy work.
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There are currently 29 mill members and 35 associate members including traders, exporters, brokers, end users, and allied businesses. 

Board of Directors

•  Each mill member names one director to the board.  
•  The RMA holds its annual convention in June.  RMA Board meetings are held in conjunction with USA Rice Federation annual meetings.

Meet the Chairman

Balafoutis, Alex

Alex Balafoutis

Alex Balafoutis, vice president of sales for the Rice Business Unit at PGP International, a company specializing in extruded products located in Woodland, California, was elected chairman of the USA Rice Millers’ Association at their annual meeting last June.  Alex has been involved with the rice industry for more than thirty years and during that time has served on numerous USA Rice committees and boards including the International Promotion Committee, the Sustainability Committee, the Trade Policy Committee, and the Japan and Taiwan technical working groups among others. 

Recent News

Enhanced Coordination Between USDA and FDA Could Improve Food Safety, Efficient Oversight

Jan 31, 2018
FDA's Scott Gottlieb (left) and USDA's Sonny Perdue (right) sit down together to formalize
agency cooperation agreement
 USDA & FDA sign agreement to bolster coordination, two men seated at table signing document with others standing behind them
WASHINGTON, DC – The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) have entered into a formal agreement to make food oversight more efficient and effective, according to an announcement by the two agencies yesterday.  The agreement aims to increase interagency collaboration, streamline inspection responsibilities, eliminate inefficiencies, and improve regulatory clarity and transparency in agriculture and food-processing industries.

“We’re happy to see this relationship formalized,” said Ben Mosely, USA Rice vice president of government affairs.  “Coordination between federal agencies is extremely important because regulators don’t always understand ag issues, and we support efforts to ensure that growers and millers aren't being asked to comply with duplicative rules.  Whether the issue is food safety, rice pretenders, or biotechnology, increased coordination between these two agencies is a good thing for U.S. rice.”

The USDA and FDA already coordinate oversight of the nation’s food supply, as many of their jurisdictions overlap.  The agreement will formalize that cooperation in order to identify areas of redundancy, making regulatory processes such as facility inspections more efficient.  This has the potential to reduce regulatory cost to the industry, and to decrease the number of facilities currently subject to dual regulatory requirements by both the USDA and the FDA.

FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb said on Tuesday, “This agreement not only formalizes this ongoing coordination, but presents a great opportunity to expand those efforts through better integration and increased clarity to the agriculture and food processing sectors.  Our coordination with these sectors plays an integral role in helping to keep our nation’s food supply safe and secure.”

“We at the USDA have a motto: Do Right, and Feed Everyone,” said U.S. Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue.  “We believe this joint effort will help us move one step closer to that goal.”