Mississippi’s modern commercial rice production began in 1948 when Rex Kimbrell produced about 300 acres just south of Greenville in Washington County. By 1954, about 77,000 acres were harvested. After the 1954 crop, the U.S. government instituted acreage controls, and only 52,000 acres were harvested in 1955. Rice culture in the Mississippi Delta was limited by this government program, not producer interest. After the acreage control program was eliminated in 1973, the harvested acreage increased to 108,000 acres in 1974. In the following years, rice production increased rapidly, reaching a high of 335,000 harvested acres and 14.4 million hundredweight (cwt) in 1981.
Rice production in Mississippi has been almost totally limited to the Mississippi-Yazoo Delta, with very little production outside this area. Historically, the central-Delta counties of Bolivar, Sunflower, and Washington have been the leading rice-producing counties. In recent years, Tunica County has increased rice acreage and annually ranks in the top three counties for rice production in Mississippi.
The table below shows United States Department of Agriculture Farm Service Agency certified rice acres planted by county in Mississippi, 2009-2014.
STARKVILLE, Miss. -- Online preregistration for Mississippi’s premier row crop course is open.
Hosted by the Mississippi State University Extension Service and the Mississippi Agricultural and Forestry Experiment Station, the 2023 Row Crop Short course will be held on Dec. 4-6 at the Mill Conference Center in Starkville.
STARKVILLE, Miss. – Bolivar County, Mississippi, is the place to be for rice connoisseurs Sept. 21.
Rice Fest will highlight the commodity from 4-9 p.m. in downtown Merigold. Not only is it National Rice Month, but this year marks the 33rd year Delta Rice Promotions has highlighted the state’s rice producers and industry. The event is free of charge and open to the public.
STONEVILLE, Miss. -- After taking a break from rice last year, Mississippi producers who typically grow the crop have returned to it this year. Hunter Bowman, Mississippi State University Extension Service rice specialist, said growers in the state have planted 119,000 acres of rice. That’s well over the 84,500 acres planted in 2022.
STARKVILLE, Miss. -- If the newest Mississippi planting forecast holds, more corn and rice will be produced in 2023 compared to recent years, while demand will drive down cotton acreage.
The National Agricultural Statistics Service, a branch of the U.S. Department of Agriculture, released its annual prospective plantings report March 31. According to the report, intended cotton acreage is at 400,000 acres, down 25% from the 530,000 acres planted in 2022. Growers also plan to plant 700,000 acres of corn, which is 21% more than the 580,000 acres harvested last year.
“Snow” appearing on the sides of highways and bare ground visible for miles is a sure indication that row crop harvest in Mississippi is well underway. As of early October, the majority of the 2022 crop was already harvested, although much work remains for certain crops.
On paper, Mike Wagner seems like an ordinary, successful Mississippi producer, but, in person, he defies expectations.
Following its 2020 cancellation, the Mississippi State University Extension Service’s Row Crop Short Course hosted 675 people from Mississippi and neighboring states.
Four-generation farm family trusts MSU Extension
Four generations of Steeles have graduated from “our dear ol’ State.” While the university has certainly changed over the years, for the Steele family, one thing remains constant: they trust the land-grant institution’s research and outreach.
Delta farmer Travis Satterfield reflects on 40+ years in the fields
The price of rice hasn’t increased much since Travis Satterfield of Benoit began growing it in 1974, but nearly everything else in the world of production agriculture has changed.
Rice is one of Mississippi’s only commodities to be grown, milled, packaged, sold, and eaten right here in the state. And, for decades, the annual Rice Tasting Luncheon in Cleveland, Mississippi, has allowed local residents to show off their best rice-based dishes at Delta State University in Bolivar County, which produces more than 1.5 million hundredweight of rice annually.