The 60th Annual Meeting of the North Carolina Peanut Growers Association was held yesterday at the peanut research station at Lewiston-Woodville. Deputy Director explains that the turnout is a testament to the strength of peanut production in North Carolina:
"We have had a great turn out today. A lot of interested growers and we are having close to record yields this year but people still want to learn more."
It’s been an outstanding year for peanuts:
"It’s one of those rare years where we get the rainfall when we needed it making it a good production year. "
For more from the 60th Annual Meeting of the North Carolina Peanut Growers Association and other field days check out our Calendar and Other Ag news stories.
Estimating Losses from Hurrican Isaac
Kurt Guidry of Louisiana State University says it could take a while to get a good handle on agricultural losses from Hurricane Isaac:
“We are in the beginning stages of trying to put some dollar figures on the economic impact of the storm. As we continue to gather information we will likely see additional issues that pop up in terms of impacts to our producers.”
UN Agencies Work to Avoid Food Crisis
To avoid a food crisis, three UN food agencies have urged governments to take action to curb rising prices of corn, wheat and soybeans. The heads of the UN World Food Program, Food and Ag Organization and International Fund for Agricultural Development warn that the sharp rise in food prices in recent months threatens to make life more difficult for tens of millions of people. The last report showed global prices after three months of decline had increased 6%. This was due in part to the US drought and the impact of dry weather on Russia’s wheat harvest.
Terms of the Farm Bill Still Under Discussion
The Senate’s version of the 2012 farm bill includes tighter payment limits but Southwest Council of Agribusiness Chairman Dee Vaughan says they aren’t feasible or realistic in today’s farming environments:
“Because of technology, efficiency of scale, and farms getting larger, the $50,000 limit in the Senate bill is just totally unreasonable and unrealistic. We are very pleased that the house bill restored the limit to $125,000 which is a much more realistic number for the size of the farms we have today.”
The tighter payment limits were an idea from Iowa Senator Chuck Grassley and Vaughan says that resides with how USDA defines a family farmer, which is anyone who sells $1000 worth of product in one year. He says that means a student who sells a 4H or FFA animal in a livestock could technically be considered a farmer.
Scientists Find Health of Organics Not Proven
Finally, the market for organics in the US grew to $26.7 billion in 2010 up from $3.7 billion in 1997. Some consumers turn to organic foods because of the perception that organically produced foods are more nutritious than conventional alternatives. But a study conducted by scientists at Stanford, did not find robust evidence to support this perception.