Agriculture

LSU AgCenter/Boyd Padgett
Wheat plants show tip burn on leaves seven days after below-freezing temperatures.

Louisiana farmers hope cane, wheat hold up to cold weather

BATON ROUGE — Louisiana farmers and experts are remaining “cautiously optimistic” that the recent freezing weather did not significantly damage the state’s sugar cane or wheat crops.
Most of the state’s sugarcane mills completed their grinding season at the end of the year before the cold weather arrived. Some mills in the Bayou Teche area in Iberia and St. Mary parishes are expected to go into the middle of January before finishing.

THE POST-SIGNAL / Steve Bandy
Area rice and soybean producers listen as Dr. Dustin Harrell discusses rice fertility and production practices during Thursday morning’s Producers Meeting at the LSU AgCenter.

Area rice, soybean producers gather here

crowley - Rice and soybean producers from Acadia and the surrounding area gathered Thursday morning for the first in a series of meetings hosted by the LSU AgCenter to help farmers prepare for the 2018 crop.
During the approximately four-hour session, farmers were able to get advice for key decisions made early in the year, including variety selection and field preparation.
With County Agent Jeremy Hebert as master of ceremonies, the program began with the annual meeting of the Acadia Rice Growers Association.

A farmer harvests sugarcane in the snow near Lecompte on Dec. 8. Despite a wet growing season and an early December snowstorm, Louisiana is expecting to set a record in terms of sugar per acre this year. Because of the large crop, some mills are extending their grinding season as late as Jan. 20. Photo by Bruce Schultz/LSU AgCenter

Louisiana sugarcane crop poised to break record

It looks as if Louisiana’s sugarcane grinding season is going to be an extended one. But there is a good reason for the late finish—an exceptional sugarcane crop.
Most years, the majority of mills complete grinding by the end of December. While some may be finished by then this year, others are scheduled to continue grinding until as late as Jan. 20.
“That’s very late,” said Kenneth Gravois, LSU AgCenter sugarcane specialist. “That makes a lot of people nervous going that late, but we’ve had a good crop. We’re sitting on a record crop here in Louisiana.”

Attendees at the Farm to School conference on Oct. 24 at the Pennington Biomedical Research Center in Baton Rouge talk with representatives of the Louisiana Department of Agriculture and Forestry. (Photo by Rick Bogren/LSU AgCenter)

Grant supports Farm to School Program

The Louisiana Department of Education Division of Nutrition Support, in collaboration with LSU AgCenter, has announced a multiyear effort toward a statewide Farm to School Program.
Designed to increase the amount of locally produced foods served in schools, the three-year agreement provides $900,000 to support the program.

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