The latest drought monitor released by USDA for South Carolina shows dry conditions holding steady to improving slightly. The percentage of the state reporting drought-free conditions remained the same at 27 1/3%, as well as percentage of the state reporting abnormally dry conditions remaining the same at just shy of 73%. The area of the state reporting moderate drought conditions decreased by 1/100th of a point, but the area of the state reporting severe drought conditions decreased slightly from just over 8% to just under 8%.
National Sorghum Producers Seeking Nominations for Board of Directors
The nominating committee for the National Sorghum Producers is currently seeking applicants to fill four seats on its board of directors. Anyone interested in serving the sorghum industry through this role may visit the NSP website to download an application and learn more about the position. The deadline to apply is May 1, 2013.
Census of Agriculture Still Ongoing
The five-year census of agriculture has been in farmer’s hands for several months now, but for several reasons, response has been slow. Renee Picanso of USDA's National Agricultural Statistics Service explains the next steps in follow up on survey collection for the 2012 Census of Agriculture:
“We have just dropped our second follow up mailing, so producers can look for that. We do appreciate people responding via mail or the internet. After we get the mail back from this we will be close to the 75% mark, we were about 64% before it went out. Then we will start with follow up phoning and field data collecting.”
NC Governor’s Budget Clobbers Ag Entities
Governor Pat McCrory’s proposed budget released last week hit some ag entities hard. First, Billy Ray Hall of the NC Rural Center released a statement stating that McCrory’s budget called for a reduction in $10 million for fiscal year 2013-14, Hall states this will decrease funds for rural projects by more than 60 percent.
The NC Biotech Center’s President and CEO Norris Tolson comments that, as written, the Governor’s budge directs the Biotechnology Center to use previously committed resources to continue daily operations, and such use of these reserves would cause the Center to default on commitments to startup companies, grants, and other previously made obligations.
NC AG Commissioner Steve Troxler will have more on the Governor’s Budget and it’s impacts on agriculture tomorrow on Today’s Topic.
North Carolina Loses Ground in Latest Drought Monitor
In the latest drought monitor released by USDA, North Carolina lost a little ground in the moisture battle. The previous report indicated more than 73% of the state was drought free, in the latest report, that percentage dropped to 67. The portion of the state reporting abnormally dry conditions increased from just shy of 27% to almost 33%, yet the area of the state reporting moderate drought conditions remains the same at just under 7%. The entire state of Virginia remains drought-free.