LAS TORTUGAS

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23 September 2022

Acres and acres and acres of rice

Some countries are limiting their exports of rice, an action that will have a negative impact on other countries that rely on such exports to stock their grocery store shelves.  Almost as though Nicaragua knew what was coming in the way of rising prices and potential food shortages, the country has worked to massively increase its production of rice.  Feeding its own people continues to be a huge commitment; and if the crops are really good there may be some to export, thus bringing in much needed money.

Huge amounts of land are now devoted to growing rice and that land usually produces more than one crop each year.  Found along the rice-growing acreage are hundreds of relatively new processing plants similar to this one.

Wending its way through the vast expanses of rice fields is a new road built to facilitate planting, maintenance, and harvesting; and then the processing and movement of the crops after harvest - whether the crop is destined for internal use or for export. 

I recently traveled the approximately 25 mile length of the new road.  It's a wide smooth easy ride putting travelers almost into Managua (depending on which way you're traveling) with some beautiful views along the way.

From planting to harvesting is roughy 120 days and that gives a couple of harvests each year.  In Nicaragua most of the work is done by hand, including building or rebuilding the dikes that surround each rice field to keep the water in during most of the growing.