Vermilion

Dec 23, 2013 7:30 PM by Akeam Ashford

LSU: Future For Farmers in Vermilion Parish Look Bright

According to the LSU Agriculture center, the future for farming in Vermilion parish looks bright.

With roughly 11 million people in China's middle class, Ag agent Andrew Granger says the country is buying nearly $18 million in U.S. Agricultural and food products each year. More than any other country.

"They have money, so they're trying to feed their people better. They're eating more meat. Soy beans are not only used for oil, but for soy bean meal, which they use to feed their hogs and chickens, and so they want to improve their diets so they're buying our beans," Granger said.

Four years ago, global demand and the chance to make more money drove rice farmer Ross Hebert to start planting soy beans in his fields.

"I've looked into planting the beans as an extra cash crop, because we use the same equipment as we use for rice. The soy bean doesn't cost quite as much as it does to put in a rice crop," Hebert said.

Last year, Louisiana farmers planted roughly one million acres of beans.

Granger says farmers are also seeing record prices for rice, crawfish, and sugar cane.

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