Acadiana farmers & officials expecting average rice harvest this season

CROWLEY, La. (KLFY) – Because Acadiana had a lot of rain during the month of July, the LSU AgCenter says that rice yields could be just around average for this rice season.

Farmers are in the middle of harvesting this year’s rice crop. The season typically starts during mid-February or March, depending on the weather, and ends in the middle of August.

“We’ve had some really good yields, above 50 barrels per acre, which we like to see. But we’ve also had several fields below 40 and in the 30 barrel range, so you know, those are very undesirable,” said Dustin Harrell with the LSU AgCenter.

In Acadiana, the rice harvest was supposed to start in early July, but with almost daily rain showers throughout the month, progress has slowed significantly.

“When that rice is wet and the soil’s wet, we don’t really want to harvest the rice, especially the retun crop,” said Harrell.

“All this rice is standing right now, and you get a big storm, or thunderstorms in here in the afternoons, with high winds and rain, when it’s ripe like this, the wind will shake the grains off some, but that’s not the big problem, the problem is it will knock it down,” said Allen Lawson, a rice farmer from Crowley.

Even with all the rain we saw throughout the month of July in Acadiana, rice farmers say that they’re still expecting to have an average rice yield.

“We’ve had some pretty weak prices for the past few years, and it looks like this year has shown some promise. It just depends on the weather you got, and when that crop was planted, or how it turns out. You know, we do everything we can do, and then it’s in mother nature’s hands from there,” said Lawson.



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