Jeff RiceUtica, KY
Rice Agri-Marketing LLC
Daviess County Conservation District
Jeff Rice graduated from Western Kentucky University in 1983 and has worked as a manager, sales rep and certified crop advisor for USS Agrichem, Stauffer Chemicals/ICI Americas, and Miles Farm Supply/Big Rivers. Jeff and his wife Tammy have raised 3 children and farm approximately 500 acres of corn, soybean, canola and wheat.
“Stewardship and making our natural resources better for the next generations is our calling. We can make a difference for the future,” says Rice.
Rice bought his first farm in 1987 and realized very quickly that without good conservation practices, “land, water and other natural resources would be lost for future generations,” he remembers. They’ve been using 100 percent no-till since the start.
The Rice’s operation uses cover crops, grass waterways, filter strips, water drop structures and a series of other conservation practices. As a result, Rice says he’s seen higher levels of organic matter in his soils, better drainage, higher yields, and greater profits. As added bonuses, he says using the practices have saved him time, cut costs, enhanced wildlife habitat on his operation, and improved the farm’s long-term sustainability. “Conservation is not easy,” he says. “It takes a lot of planning, determination, hard work and faith.”
According to Rice, the biggest barrier to the adoption of conservation practices is the fear of change and added costs. Education and on-farm research help alleviate peoples’ doubts about conservation practices and show them on how to best sustain profitability, production, and our natural resources for the future.
In 2010, Jeff started Rice Agri-Marketing, which serves Kentucky, Indiana, and Tennessee growers. The family business sells NuTech/Stewart/Partners Brands of corn, beans, wheat, canola, and cover crop seed. They are also a Premium Precision Planting Dealer and offer processor, marketing, and production/genetics research plots and recommendations.
Rice currently serves on the Daviess County Conservation District board, the Kentucky Corn Grower’s Board of Directors, the Daviess County Farm Bureau, the Regional Ag Expo, the Kentucky Agriculture and Environment in the Classroom Board of Directors, as a Deacon of Bellevue Baptist Church, and as member of International/Kentucky Gideon’s. Rice is a former Chairman and former Kentucky board member for NACD and is a past president of the Kentucky Association of Conservation Districts. In 2012, Rice was named the Kentucky Conservation Person of Year and is member of NACD Southeastern Conservation Hall of Fame.
Updated September 2022