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ARS Home » Southeast Area » Stuttgart, Arkansas » Dale Bumpers National Rice Research Center » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #384660

Research Project: Gene Discovery and Crop Design for Current and New Rice Management Practices and Market Opportunities

Location: Dale Bumpers National Rice Research Center

Title: Texas organic rice production guidelines


Submitted to: Experiment Station Bulletins
Publication Type: Experiment Station
Publication Acceptance Date: 10/21/2020
Publication Date: 10/21/2020
Citation: Zhou, X., Way, M.O., McClung, A.M., Dou, F. 2020. Texas organic rice production guidelines. Experiment Station Bulletins.

Interpretive Summary: There is increasing market demand for US produced organic rice. Organic rice is produced using methods that differ from those employed in conventional rice production and avoid the use of synthetic fertilizers and pesticides. Instead, organic production relies on animal manures, crop residues, green manures, tillage, water, and other biological measures to maintain soil health and supply plant nutrients. Any chemical, fertilizer, or seed treatment that has been certified by the Organic Materials Review Institute (OMRI) can also be used for organic production. Because this is a relatively new market for US rice production there has been little research on optimum and viable farming practices for rice production under organic management systems. These guidelines present an overview of cultural practices that can be employed in organic rice production that optimize economic returns for growers while providing high quality organic rice product for consumers.

Technical Abstract: Organic rice acreage has steadily increased over the past decade, driven by increased market demand. Since 1995, organic rice acreage has increased in the U.S. by almost six-fold, with a majority of acreage being grown in the Southern U.S. The acreage in Texas alone reached more than 17,000 in 2020. However, there is very limited information available on organic rice production and management methods that are viable and optimize economic returns for growers while adhering to the stringent standards for certified organic crops. This first edition of organic rice production guidelines was developed to help farmers grow rice organically and addresses cover crops, variety selection, seed treatments, irrigation management practices, nitrogen management, disease management, and insect pest management. The guidelines are expected to be updated and expanded when new research results and findings are available in the future.