ARKANSAS, USA — The top U.S. rice-producing state has for the first time exported rice to China, the largest global rice importing country. Tim and Robin Ralston of Atkins-based Ralston Family Farms, announced the shipment Tuesday (Sept. 14). Gov. Asa Hutchinson is slated to visit the farm later this week.
Through a contract with a private importer in China, the first shipment of rice from Ralston Family Farms arrived in China in late July 2021. A second shipment is being scheduled with future shipments planned on regular intervals to meet demand. The rice will be sold on the retail market under the label of Ralston Family Farms.
“The Ralstons’ rice is more than a commodity, and growing rice is more than a job for the family. Rice has been part of their lives for 10 generations, and when they exported their first shipment to China in July, they were shipping a piece of their heart and their heritage. The rice raised in the Arkansas soil will enrich lives in China, and perhaps shrink the distance between our nations and our cultures. Everybody loves rice, and it’s a good development for Arkansas and the Ralstons that the people across the ocean will have our rice to enjoy,” said Gov. Hutchinson.
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