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GMA on the Road: Acadia agriculture

Posted at 8:01 AM, May 09, 2018
and last updated 2018-08-07 19:06:27-04

On today’s GMA on the Road, Meteorologist Daniel Phillips learns that from rice to crawfish, agriculture has remained a way of life Acadia parish.Ask almost anyone to define Acadia Parish and two words will come up a lot, rice and crawfish. In a parish dominated by agriculture, the small grain is king.Known as the Rice Capital of the World, the Acadia Parish economy runs on green rows and flooded fields.Local farmer Alan Lawson says that rice is a big part of what the people of Acadia Parish do. "It’s a big part of the economy."But the farms here do more than just propping up the economy, they keep families together."My grandad started farming in the 30’s," says Lawson. "My dad took over in the 70s and I took over in the 90s."Lawson says that keeping the family involved in agriculture is important, but sometimes tempers can flare."Sometimes we agree on everything, sometimes we don’t. Sometimes it’s hard to work with family."And since the rice grows in the summer, and is harvested in August, the cooler months can be spent on another South Louisiana staple, crawfish.What was once more of a past time has evolved into big business, and that’s easy to see from any drive through the parish.And it doesn’t look like innovation will grow stagnant. As Lawson notes, things always change. "When my grandfather started they didn’t do anything like this and when my father started they didn’t do crawfish rotations." Who knows what will pop up in the future. So, for now, rice and crawfish will remain on top, and that seems just fine for Alan"I really enjoy what I do," says Lawson.  "I guess if you enjoy what you do you never really go to work."