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Serving: Central

Saving water a vital part of rice profitability formula

Researchers are finding farmers can grow a "nice rice crop" using two acre feet of irrigation water.

Rice prices have improved somewhat in recent weeks, but not enough to make rice farming truly profitable. That’s why more than 100 farmers traveled to Osceola, Ark., to attend the Mississippi County Water Management Field Day Tuesday (Aug. 8).

Joe Massey, agronomist with the USDA-ARS Delta Water Management Research Unit at Arkansas State University, set the stage for the presentation, which included talks given by Mike and Ryan Sullivan with Florenden Farms, which hosted the field day.

Dr. Massey said he’s seen a number of farmers grow “a nice rice crop” with only two acre-feet of water. That could be increasingly important as growers try to conserve water in areas like the Grand Prairie of Arkansas.

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