Southern Tobacco Fields Plagued with Tomato Spotted Wilt Virus


In the latest crop progress report for North Carolina for conditions through Sunday, July 31st, there were 6.1 days suitable for field work, about the same as the previous week.  Mac Mallow with Robeson County Extension reports that corn harvest has begun on some early hybrids with yields being reports as above average.  Insect numbers are beginning to pick up in soybeans and cotton, with some treatments going out.  Blake Sandlin with Duplin County Extension reports that tomato spotted wilt virus has been very bad on the county’s tobacco this year, and black shank is now starting to show up in the crop.  Corn and beans are looking good for the most part, and good rain this coming weekend would be perfect.

South Carolina Corn Drying Down

There were 6.2 days suitable for field work in South Carolina as reported in the latest crop progress report for conditions through Sunday, July 30th, compared to under six the previous week.  Calhoun County’s Charles Davis reports that crop progress continues under good weather conditions.  Spotty showers helped in some locations, but more irrigation systems were active during the week.  Kyle Daniel with Georgetown County reports that tobacco is being harvested at a high rate, and the crop continues to ripen rapidly as a result of excessive rainfall.  Corn is mature and drying down, and is in excellent condition.  Cotton, soybeans and peanuts are progressing well with all crops beginning to fruit.

Japan Beef Tariff Increase Highlights Need for Trade Agreement

The National Cattlemen’s Beef Association says the increased tariff on beef imports to Japan underscores the “urgent need” for a bilateral trade agreement between Japan and the United States. Japan announced it would increase the tariff on frozen beef imports from 38.5 percent to 50 percent until April 2018. NCBA President Craig Uden says the tariffs “unfairly distort the market and punish both producers and consumers. Japan was the top export market for U.S. beef, valued at $1.5 billion in 2016.

Poultry Producers Comment on NAFTA Renegotiation Plans

U.S. poultry producers say the modernization of the North American Free Trade Agreement could bring trade improvements. The National Chicken Council and the USA Poultry & Egg Export Council together called NAFTA a “bonanza for American Agriculture.” The National Chicken Council says Canada and the United States had reached preliminary agreement on increasing the quotas for U.S. chicken into Canada, which could be included in NAFTA. The poultry industry also stands by sanitary and phytosanitary rules that were negotiated as part of the Trans-Pacific Partnership and urged the U.S., Mexico and Canada to adopt the improved rules as part of the NAFTA renegotiation.

A native of the Texas Panhandle, Rhonda was born and raised on a cotton farm where she saw cotton farming evolve from ditch irrigation to center pivot irrigation and harvest trailers to modules. After graduating from Texas Tech University, she got her start in radio with KGNC News Talk 710 in Amarillo, Texas.