Rice apportionment methods change

To provide for a more accurate and equitable reflection of market conditions, the commodity programs for long grain rice and medium grain rice (including short grain rice) are split into separate programs, for the first time.

The Food, Conservation, and Energy Act of 2008 was enacted June 18, 2008, and Section 1108 of that Act provides that the base acres of rice on a farm shall be apportioned to long grain rice and medium grain rice using one of two methods.

As Robert Helmer, County Executive Director for the Evangeline Parish Farm Service Agency Office, explained, these methods are:

1) the four-year average of the percentages of acreage planted in the applicable state to long grain rice and medium grain rice or

2) the four-year average of the percentages of acreage planted or prevented planted on the tract to long grain rice and medium grain rice. Using the second method, if rice was not planted on the tract during one of the four years, the percentages of acreage planted in the applicable state to long grain rice and medium grain rice will be substituted.

Helmer further explained the apportionment divides the current rice base acres into long grain rice and medium grain rice base acres. The sum of long grain rice and medium grain rice base acres shall be equal to the current base acres on each respective tract. The long grain rice and medium grain rice yields shall not be increased or decreased on each respective tract because of this apportionment. For the purpose of this apportionment, medium grain rice includes short grain rice.

Rice producers should contact the Evangeline Parish Farm Service Agency Office for additional information related to the State Average Method and Four-Year Average of Planted and Prevented Planted Rice methods for apportionment of base acres of rice on their farms.

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