Tobacco Harvest Complete, Most Producers a Little Short

Many areas of the southeast are in a harvest transition period, having wrapped up harvest on one, maybe two crops, and waiting for maturity on others.

Don Nicholson, North Carolina Department of Agriculture Regional Agronomist says tobacco farmers in his region are wrapping up:

“Most everybody is done, actually a little premature than what they were hoping.  Everybody would have loved to have had another two weeks of harvest, but that’s not the way it happened, and we have a few people still harvesting.  At the end it was a good crop, not nearly as heavy as some people would have liked, but good quality, pretty  much everything that’s been put in the past month or so was ripe to over ripe, and a good quality when it comes out, good tobacco to sell, but most everybody wanted more of it.”

Are you going to see most producers meet their contracts?

“I think most of them are going to be a little short, it’s not going to be the heaviest crop we’ve ever had, that’s for sure.  It would have been nice to have had a little more rain the last month or so, put a little life in the crop, mature the crop out, but that’s not the way it went.  We had some pretty dry weather that hurt the weight of it.  Overall, most everything was fairly good quality and seems to be selling fairly well.”

Producers are starting to turn out peanuts, and we have heard that the peanut crop is just astounding this year.

“Well, what I’ve seen is good, I haven’t been a lot of other places in the state to look at the peanut crop, but what most people are turning up looks good, but I haven’t seen a combine run, yet, to see what’s actually going into the basket.  But what they’re turning up looks good, and we’ve had plenty of dry weather, the shells on the Virginia’s are in really good shape, and that’s important with a Virginia peanut.  It depends on where it rained, if you got some rain in the last month the peanuts are a lot better, if it was dry, they’re not quite there.  I think it’s going to be a good crop overall, but, from what I’ve seen, it’s not an astounding crop in my estimation.”

NCDA Regional Agronomist Don Nicholson

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.