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

Cruz Lifts Hold; Senate Confirms Northey at USDA

Feb 27, 2018
Bill Northey
 Bill Northey, headshot
WASHINGTON, DC – The Senate confirmed Bill Northey as USDA Undersecretary for Farm Production and Conservation today after an extended stalemate surrounding his confirmation.

The Senate Agriculture Committee voted unanimously last October to advance Northey, currently Iowa’s Secretary of Agriculture, but Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX) held up the nominee for months in an effort to alter the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS).

President Trump met this morning with Cruz at the White House, along with Senators Joni Ernst (R-IA), Chuck Grassley (R-IA), and Pat Toomey (R-PA) to discuss Cruz's issues with the RFS. Cruz then released his hold on Northey’s confirmation, ending a drawn-out standoff leaving several positions unfilled at the Farm Service Agency (FSA), the Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS), and the Risk Management Agency (RMA).

“Undersecretary Northey's confirmation is long overdue and we’re glad to see it finally go through,” said Ben Mosely, USA Rice vice president of government affairs.  “With this leadership role filled, we hope to soon see the administrator-level positions filled so they can get to work on the many issues facing rice farmers.”

While this morning’s meeting at the White House lifted the hold on Northey, a compromise on the RFS was not reached.

Created by the Energy Policy Act of 2005, the RFS mandates that gasoline contain a certain percentage of biofuels, mostly ethanol from corn.  The senators from Iowa, the country’s largest producer of biofuels, have pushed back on Cruz’s criticism of the RFS.  Cruz says the RFS hurts energy jobs, a particular concern for Pennsylvania refineries.

USDA Secretary Sonny Perdue has long supported Northey’s nomination, calling him “a quality candidate” and “an authentic farmer” who is trusted in Iowa.  “We’re anxious to get him up on the job,” Perdue has said.