Rice Told Tales

After a nearly hundred-year absence, rice has made a comeback in South Carolina.

Photo of rice field.

Charleston Food Facts

In the early 1700s, planters near the coastal port of Charleston began the arduous process of clearing and diking inland swamps to provide water for the cultivation of rice. But the first attempts at growing it failed. Finally, in 1726, rice was successfully introduced into the colony, and with its success came the first wave of economic prosperity. In its rice heyday, Charleston Harbor was one of the largest shippers of rice in the world, second only to Bangkok. With the abolition of slavery in 1865, labor-intensive rice production had screeched to a halt by the turn of the century.

Photo of white rice.After a nearly hundred-year absence, rice has made a comeback in South Carolina. With the help of modern technology, Plumfield Plantation, located on the Great Pee Dee River near Darlington, S.C. reintroduced aromatic rice to South Carolina in 1996. The only colonial plantation to still offer rice commercially in the Carolinas, Plumfield Plantation proudly serves the truly distinctive taste of the 18th century Southern rice plantations. Today, Carolina Plantation Rice is the preferred rice of many of Charleston’s finest chefs. Bags of this unique “taste of the South” are available at a number of fine restaurants and stores across the area. Or you can buy directly from the grower by visiting carolinaplantationrice.com.

Author: Patra Taylor

A freelance writer for three decades, Patra Taylor is currently a regular columnist and features correspondent for the Charleston Mercury. In that capacity, she has interviewed numerous Charleston celebrities along with a few national figures including FOX News political commentator, Tucker Carlson; Washington, D.C. insider-turned-winemaker, Bear Dyke; and country music singer/songwriter, Philip Claypool. She is also a regular contributor to Charleston Style and Design and the Southeast Film Guide.

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