Virtual Texas Western Rice Belt Conference a Success!

This week the Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Center in collaboration with the Texas Rice Council, hosted the first virtual Western Rice Belt Production Conference. The conference had 146 unique views and attendees logged on from all across Texas, and even gained some international viewers from Mexico, Uruguay and even Pakistan!

Presentations included:

Attendees also heard from Tommy Turner, retired rice farmer, about projects that the Texas Rice Council and US Rice Producers Association are taking on to that have helped rice farmers in Texas and throughout the US market and sell their rice.

Sponsors and other organizers, including Galen Franz, Chairman of the Texas Rice Research Foundation, Tim Walker from Horizon Ag, Dennis Neuman with Ducks Unlimited and the USA Rice Federation were also featured during the conference.

Finally, Bob Little and Dr. Mo Way, were both recognized for their contributions in their many years serving the Texas rice industry. Attendees sent messages of appreciation and congratulations to both gentlemen and we will surely be missing them but wish them the best in their retirement!

While attendees miss the in-person meetings for the camaraderie and networking, comments were overwhelmingly positive:

“I thought the virtual program went quite well. It was easier to follow the presenter and slides. Look forward to be able to review the presentations at a later time. But I do like the traditional face to face meeting better.”

“Enjoyed the program very much. Best wishes to everyone and stay healthy.’

The conference will continue to be available On-Demand for the rest of the month.

2021 Western Rice Belt Production Conference

January 20, 2021 | Via Zoom

About this Event

This joint effort of our Western Rice Belt planning committee, The Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service, U.S. Rice Producers Association, and Texas A&M AgriLife Research offered growers and others the opportunity to hear presentations from the top Extension and Research scientists from Texas as well as respected individuals from the rice industry.

TimeAgenda Item
8:00 a.m.Welcome
8:15 a.m.Basics of Herbicide Resistance Development in Weeds
- Dr. Muthu Bagavathiannan
8:45 a.m.Break
9:00 a.m.Rice Varieties and Current Breeding Programs in Rice
- Mr. Galen Franz
9:30 a.m.Insect Management
- Dr. Mo Way
10:00 a.m.TDA Pesticide Laws & Regulations Update
- Melissa Barton
11:00 a.m.Cost of Rice Production
- Dr. Joe Outlaw
11:30 a.m.Rice Market Outlook
- Dr. Thomas Wynn
12:00 p.m.LUNCH BREAK
12:50 p.m.Recognize upcoming retirement of
Dr. Mo Way and Bob Little
1:00 p.m.Update on Conservation and Working Lands Programs
- Dennis Neumann
1:30 p.m.Rice Water Efficiency
- Dr. Michele Reba, Research Hydrologist
USDA Agricultural Research Service

2021 NCS Cotton & Rice Virtual Conference



Virtual Conference Began on February 10, 2021 & Still Going On NOW



Sponsored by Cotton Incorporated, US Rice Producers Association, and a production of MidAmerica Farm Publications. Academic Partners are: University of Arkansas, Mississippi State University, University of Missouri, University of Tennessee, LSU AgCenter, Auburn University and Texas A&M. Technical Partners are USDA-ARS centers in Oxford, MS, Stoneville, MS and Auburn, AL. Ag Media Co-Sponsors Delta Farm Press.

Plans are being made to hold the 25th Annual Conservation Systems Conferences at the Embassy Suites Conference Center, Jonesboro, Arkansas in 2022. 

Rice Market & Technology Convention Goes Viral

Last week the US Rice Producers Association launched its first in a series of Virtual Rice Market & Technology Convention seminars. Since the pandemic has made in person meetings and international travel impossible, USRPA has been providing virtual seminars for its members and affiliated industry throughout the world.

In this latest project, USRPA is presenting a variety of topics from world renown speakers in easy to digest seminars to our past and future RMTC attendees. Sponsors and Exhibitors of our postponed RMTC in Panama are also benefiting from the seminars as attendees are encouraged to visit the virtual booths and visit with them via Zoom.

The first RMTC Virtual Seminar featured a thorough examination of today’s world rice market.  Dwight Roberts started with “The Perfect Storm Isn’t Over” – a look at how the pandemic and recent weather is affecting the US rice crop and what to expect. Stuart Hoetger continued with “Ongoing Harvest Update and Cash Markets” followed by Dennis DeLaughter’s presentation, “Rice Futures and the Market Fundamentals as COVID-19 Continues.” Milo Hamilton closed out the presentations with “Asian Rice Hovering over the Americas and World Markets.” The speakers concluded the seminar with a round table discussion, addressing questions and comments from the audience.

“These kinds of virtual meetings are important for the buyers and sellers of US rice as a part of the food supply chain during this disrupting COVID-19 pandemic, allowing for a needed exchange of market information,” commented Dwight Roberts.

The next seminar will be announced shortly and will feature speakers touching on topics involving the Mercosur rice market.  The seminar will be open to all on a first come, first serve basis for the first 100 participants who register but will be made available for on-demand viewing on our website:

For more information including links to last week’s video, you can visit You can also follow us on Facebook for the latest announcements program updates.

USRPA Organizes Virtual Meeting with China Rice Buyers

USRPA successfully hosted another virtual event featuring eight speakers from the U.S. presenting for an audience in China this week. Over 80 attendees registered for the live event via Zoom and many have already watched the recorded seminar since.

Grace Wang, Eastern Hemisphere Programs Coordinator moderated the event and Marcela Garcia, USRPA COO welcomed the audience on behalf of the USRPA and its members and thanked them for their participation. Long time supporters of USRPA, Riviana Foods, and RiceTec presented on various products and services they offer their clients. Dwight Roberts, President & CEO of USRPA gave a very informative narrative on the current U.S. long-grain crop. Tommy Turner, Texas Rice Council President & USRPA Board Member, gave a very thorough presentation on U.S. rice production, including information on varieties and the latest in farming technology. Stuart Hoetger rounded out the evening with the latest developments of medium grain rice from California.

An important highlight of the seminar is our honored speaker, LaShonda McLeod, Director of ATO from the U.S. embassy in Beijing, who gave an overview of the US-China Phase One deal and commented that China continues to make progress towards its commitment to increase purchases of U.S. agriculture. She further commented, “Regardless of the concerns we are facing in other parts of our relationship, both China and the U.S. remain positively engaged in the trade agreement - actually, it is a bright spot in our bilateral relationship.” 

Overall, the event was a success and both attendees and speakers responded positively.  The messages of nutritious, safe and reliable qualities of U.S. rice supply was mentioned continuously. Networking and communication with our trade contacts worldwide has become critical during this special pandemic. We will continue many more virtual programs in other countries to address critical issues that are facing U.S. rice and the global rice market.    

Those who were not able to join us live are able to watch the on-demand recording with following link:

If you should have any questions, comments, or need technical assistance, please feel free to contact Veronica Galvan, Events & Technology Manager at

Recording: USRPA Presents: Market Outlook for Central America & Mexico

Start Time : Aug 20, 2020 03:34 PM

Meeting Recording:

Access Passcode: USRPA-2020

USRPA Presents: Market Outlook for Central America & Mexico

August 20, 2020
from 4:00 pm – 5:00 pm CST


Dwight Roberts, President & CEO
US Rice Producers Association

2020 U.S. Rice Harvest Yields, Grain Quality, Conditions
Thomas Wynn, PhD, Chairman
US Rice Producers Association

Rice Market Outlook for 2020-2021
Dennis DeLaughter, Board Member
US Rice Producers Association

(English with Spanish translation subtitles on the screen)


Dwight Roberts
President & CEO @ US Rice Producers Association

Dwight Roberts, President & CEO of the US Rice Producers Association, has spent the last 30 years working in agriculturally related international activities both in the private sector and as the director for international marketing at the Texas Department of Agriculture. He also spent 10 years living and working in the grain and cattle business in South America. Roberts received his bachelor’s degree from Abilene Christian University.

J. Thomas Wynn, PhD
Chairman @US Rice Producers Association

Dr. J. Thomas Wynn is a farmer, rancher, marketing analyst, and COO of M&W Farm & Ranch in Egypt, Texas. He is also a partner in Coastal Rice & Futures Inc. in East Bernard, Texas.  His specialty is risk management in agricultural commodity markets.  He also focuses on innovation diffusion and agricultural policy in both domestic and international settings.  In addition to consulting in the private sector, Wynn works with international industry trade associations and producer groups to promote sound agricultural practices and policies.

Dennis DeLaughter
Board Member, Texas @US Rice Producers Association

Dennis R. DeLaughter, a professional farm manager, investment advisor and commodity broker, operated and managed over 5000 acres of rice, corn and wheat along the Texas gulf coast, southwest of Houston for over 40 years.  He was a licensed floor trader on the Chicago Board of Trade and a frequent speaker at agri-business marketing meetings throughout the U.S. rice belt and the Midwest grain growing region. Specializing in commodity hedging and market analysis service for trading strategies, Mr. DeLaughter has served by appointment from the U.S. Secretary of Agriculture on the Agricultural Technical Advisory Committee during both the Clinton, Bush, Obama, and Trump administrations.  He is vice president of the Texas Rice Council and the former chairman of the US Rice Producers Association.  A graduate of Texas A&M University, he holds an MBA from A&M with an undergraduate degree is Agricultural Economics.

USRPA Presents: 2020 U.S. Rice Virtual Technical Seminar-China

To accommodate the global travel restriction and adapt to rapidly developing cloud technology, USRPA held its first public virtual event via Zoom in China on Wednesday 10 am -12 pm, August 26th, 2020 (US Central time is Tuesday, August 25, 9-11pm). 

The educational seminar on US rice was the first of a series virtual events that benefit both international rice buyers as well as US companies that are particularly interested in expanding their global markets.     The seminar attracted dozens attendees in China which primarily consist of rice importers, food processors and Chinese rice industry leaders. This 2 hour event began with a presentation on the latest US rice market and different topics presented by renowned industry speakers followed by a Q&A session. USDA FAS has also accepted the invitation was one of the guest speakers.  

China is open to US rice thanks to the efforts of USRPA, the first rice organization to venture into this market. After the successful completion of trade mission in China in 2019, USRPA continues to monitor the market, communicate to trade contacts and plans to conduct promotional programs.