On Tuesday, NC Ag Commissioner Steve Troxler and other state and local dignitaries officially cut the ribbon the new 55,387 square foot multipurpose pavilion at the Southeastern Ag Center near Lumberton. The Southeastern N.C. Agricultural Center is one of three agricultural centers operated by the N.C. Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services. The new facility includes a show ring, ticket office, concession area with catering options, a hospitality room and event control room. Future plans for the center include a warm-up ring for horse shows, and moveable tile flooring for trade shows and concerts. The department also operates centers in Fletcher and Williamston.
For more photo’s of the ribbon cutting, visit our home page photo slide show.
Savannah River Channel Project in Court Once Again
The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers wants a federal judge to toss a lawsuit that says a $650 million deepening of the Savannah River shipping channel needs a South Carolina pollution permit. The Georgia ports want the channel deepened to handle larger ships that will call when the Panama Canal is deepened.
Conservation groups on both sides of the river have sued saying a pollution permit is needed because toxic cadmium from river silt will be dumped on the South Carolina shore. In a response filed Monday, the corps said it's too early to sue.
Food Prices may be Settling Down
The nation’s largest farm organization has released its latest quarterly Marketbasket Survey. American Farm Bureau Economist John Anderson explains why higher food prices don’t necessarily mean more money for farmers and ranchers:
“There are a lot of things that go into the retail price of food besides the farm level commodity. The commodity component for most items is actually a relatively small part of the total retail cost.”
President Speaks on Oil Price Intervention
President Obama announced new ways his administration will try to hold down the price of oil … with gas prices a major factor in Americans' minds as Election Day approaches:
“We can't afford a situation where speculators artificially manipulate markets by buying up oil creating a perception of a shortage and driving prices higher, only to flip the oil for a high profit.”
Chinese Economic Slowdown Affecting Futures
Ag experts are keeping an eye on China and its slowing economy – now growing at the slowest pace in three-years, China’s red-hot economy may have finally hit the skids. Gone is the double-digit growth the struggling U.S. economy once looked toward for help – and U.S. growers relied on for record soybean sales.
But are ag losses a given? American Farm Bureau Trade Adviser Dave Salmonsen:
“If there is a continuation in this downward pattern it may, but from our point of view an 8% growth still seems fantastic.”