Southeast Missouri Crop Producers Receive Governor's Award for Agricultural Achievement

Southeast Missouri Crop Producers Receive Governor's Award for Agricultural Achievement

Peach Orchard, MO - Rice, corn and soybean producer Jason Bean, of Peach Orchard, and cotton ginner Riley James, of New Madrid, were each recognized today with a Governor’s Award for Agricultural Achievement, which honors outstanding farmers, growers and processors for their work with agricultural commodities and their communities. The award was presented by Missouri’s Director of Agriculture, Richard Fordyce, on behalf of Gov. Jay Nixon. 

“As Missouri’s presence in the global marketplace continues to increase, we know we can count on Missouri’s farm families to produce what the world demands,” Gov. Nixon said. “We appreciate farmers like Riley James and Jason Bean for making sure these goods get to market, while creating jobs and prosperity here at home.”

Director Fordyce toured both Bean’s and James’ operations before presenting the awards. Bean, who operates 14,000 acres of row crops in southeast Missouri, participated in the Learning Journey to Cuba with Missouri’s delegation earlier this year. Bean and his family raise rice, corn and soybeans, with approximately 50 percent of their acreage dedicated to long grain rice.  

Riley James, of A.C. Riley Cotton Co., and his family own and manage cotton gins and grain elevators in New Madrid. James, who grows cotton and soybeans, is an advocate for the Missouri cotton industry. He has served on the board of the Missouri Cotton Growers’ Organization and was president of the Southern Cotton Ginners Association in 2014.

“One thing that makes Missouri agriculture stand above the rest is our diversity,” Director Fordyce said. “From corn and soybeans to rice and cotton, Missouri’s producers, like Jason Bean and Riley James, grow a wide array of exceptional products in every corner of the state.”

Earlier in 2015, First Lady Georganne Nixon led a historic and productive trade mission to Cuba with a Missouri delegation representing farmers, ranchers, and agri-businesses and organizations who worked to boost Missouri agriculture exports. The Missouri delegation traveled with members of the U.S. Agriculture Coalition for Cuba (USACC), a coalition of more than 40 agriculture organizations working to increase agricultural exports to Cuba. The trade mission focused on establishing relationships between potential trading partners and the practical aspects of connecting U.S. suppliers with Cuban consumers. Potential areas of growth include rice, poultry meat, pork products, biofuels, soybeans, soy products, corn, co-products from ethanol plants, technology and equipment and much more.

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