September 26, 2023

Yara’s Arkansas Delta Incubator Farm Aims to Shape Next Generation Row Crop Farming

The newest Yara Incubator Farm, located in Poinsett County, Arkansas, has set out to explore next generation practices that have the capability to reshape how fertilization and irrigation of conventional row crops, especially flooded rice, is approached.

With grower prosperity and sustainability at the forefront, the farm explores a variety of commercially focused solutions as well as critical nature-positive metrics such as nutrient and water use efficiency, greenhouse gas emissions and more.

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The incubator farm in northern Poinsett County encompasses about 95 acres at the University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture’s Northeast Rice Research and Extension Center (NERREC). Poinsett County is typically one of the highest rice acreage counties in the Arkansas Delta and features what is known as the “white soils” (predominantly Henry Silt Loam and Calloway). The NERREC is the only Division research and extension center   located on these soils, thus positioning its researchers to provide valuable information for rice producers in this high-acreage rice production area of Arkansas.

“At the core, the farm is focused on strategies for increasing prosperity through return on investments while protecting the environment,” said Neil Mayberry, Regional Market Development Manager of East US. “This farm has the capability of reshaping the rice industry by introducing sustainable solutions that benefit everyone along the value chain. It’s also created an important space for Yara to engage with key partners in rice to explore potential nature-positive collaborations.”

Trial Approach

The farm’s trial consists of comparing a standard treated furrow irrigated row rice (FIRR) cropping system compared to fertigated row rice tailwater recovery system (FRRTR). The standard treated system consists of conventional aerial fertilizer applications totaling 180 pounds of nitrogen per acre over four applications while the fertigated tailwater recovery system will treat with only 77 pounds of nitrogen being metered on a demand basis using a reference strip in the field. The design of the tailwater recovery system allows for recycling of tailwater and a collection of rainwater for re-irrigation through poly pipe at top side of field. The recirculation system is designed with a sump and 3hp motor at the lowest point in the field (tailwater area) for pumping water with the capability of combining fertilizer at low rates for spoon-feeding. YaraLiva UCAN 23 and YaraRega FLEX allow for flexibility in nutrient demands while maximizing the 4R concept.

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Measurement of Success

Greenhouse gases are being measured using two Eddy Covariance towers and flux chambers to capture emission reductions. This GHG emission work is being done by the USDA-ARS Delta Water Management Unit. Crop yield and quality are also key measurements that are important to this study. Nutrient use efficiency and water use efficiency have already demonstrated greater than 50% benefit.

Stay tuned for more results following the harvest in the fall.

About Yara:
Yara grows knowledge to responsibly feed the world and protect the planet. Supporting our vision of a world without hunger and a planet respected, we pursue a strategy of sustainable value growth, promoting climate-friendly crop nutrition and zero-emission energy solutions. Yara’s ambition is focused on growing a nature-positive food future that creates value for our customers, shareholders and society at large and delivers a more sustainable food value chain.

To achieve our ambition, we have taken the lead in developing digital farming tools for precision farming, and work closely with partners throughout the food value chain to improve the efficiency and sustainability of food production. Through our focus on clean ammonia production, we aim to enable the hydrogen economy, driving a green transition of shipping, fertilizer production and other energy-intensive industries.

Founded in 1905 to solve the emerging famine in Europe, Yara has established a unique position as the industry’s only global crop nutrition company. We operate an integrated business model with around 17,000 employees and operations in over 60 countries, with a proven track record of strong returns. For more information, visit or

Media Contact:
Allison Stahl, Yara North America
Tel.: 863-370-2970