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genetics are key to rice yield, quality and risk potential
When selecting seed to plant, farmers should consider what can go wrong during the growing season and think in terms of managing risk, Rick Cartwright told visitors to the Rice Research and Extension Center here Wednesday, Aug. 9.

Cartwright, a plant pathologist, and other University of Arkansas Division of Agriculture scientists discussed research programs that impact the production, processing and marketing of rice and soybeans.

"The most fundamental factor in agriculture is good genetics," Cartwright said. "Genetics determine the risk potential of a seed variety as well as yield and quality potential."

In fields where red rice has become a stubborn weed problem, herbicide resistant Clearfield varieties are a good choice, Cartwright said. If the sheath blight fungus has found a home in a field, Rice Tec hybrids are among those rated as more genetically resistant to damage.

Rice breeder Dr. James Gibbons and Cartwright said Cybonnet should be planted more than it has been since seed became available in 2005, because it has good risk management potential as well as high yield and quality potential.

Cybonnet was developed in the U of A Division of Agriculture breeding program based at Stuttgart. Among Arkansas adapted varieties, Cybonnet has the best genetic potential in two key areas of milling yield and blast disease resistance, and it produces consistently high yields in all Arkansas rice environments, Gibbons and Cartwright said.

Wells, another high yielding Arkansas variety and the most widely planted in the state, is also a good choice for risk management, but it has weaknesses that increase risk for some growers. Wells is superior to Cybonnet for sheath blight tolerance, but Cybonnet is more resistant to the rice blast fungus.

Production practices are also part of the risk management mindset, Cartwright said.

Farmers who have skimped on potash (potassium) in their fertilizer to save money have exposed themselves to the risk of stem rot, which weakens stems and can cause lodging, Cartwright said. Potash is recommended for silt loam and sandy loam soils with low soil test levels for potassium for several reasons, including resistance to stem rot.

Annual variety performance tests by the Division of Agriculture provide an objective measure of yield, quality and risk management potential under Arkansas conditions. Variety trial results for rice, cotton, soybeans, small grains, corn and grain sorghum are available online at or from county offices of the Cooperative Extension Service.
MGR Archive 13.8.2006
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Region Type Price  
Russia Rapan $ 700
USA Jupiter Rice $630
USA Calrose #1 $830
USA Calrose #1 Paddy $480
EU Prices Baldo €660
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