Problems Ahead For Louisiana Rice Farmers From Harvey

Hurricane Harvey is expected to dump quite a lot of rain over Louisiana the next few days especially southwest Louisiana where the rice harvest is wrapping up.

But LSU AgCenter Rice Specialist Dr. Dustin Harrell says the real threat is to the ratoon crop.

“Economically that’s very important to  Louisiana rice producers.  Although a lot of our ratoon crop is not headed yet, if we get extensive flooding it could top over the ratoon stubble and kill the entire ratoon crop,” Harrell pointed out.

“Now in northeast Louisiana I’m not sure about the amount of rain they’re going to get from the storm.  But right now they’re just starting their harvest,” said Harrell.  “Obviously they’ve been backed up because a lot of farmers also grow corn and they’re trying to get most of the corn crop out of the ground before they start harvesting their rice crop.”

However, Harrell goes on to say what rice has been harvested in northeast Louisiana so far “has been really excellent.  And it would be very troubling if they have such a good crop up there and they lose some of it due the storm.”