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25th Annual NC Aquaculture Conference Set

Mark your calendars for the North Carolina Aquaculture Conference in February 2013 in New Bern. The theme of the 25th annual conference is Fish: Made in the USA. The role locally produced, farm-raised fish is playing in the American diet will be the focus of the conference attended by professionals, researchers, fish growers, and anyone interested in learning more about aquaculture. The conference will feature experts who will address everything from how North Carolina aquaculture benefits consumers to innovative production methods and access to government resources. For more information, or to pre-register, click here.

Higher Revenues Should Come with Higher Seed Costs

For the coming year – seeds costs will increase – between five and seven-percent for corn, seven and 10-percent for soybean and more than 10-percent for wheat. But Purdue University ag economists predict farmers will get much higher returns on their investment. Farm Business Management Specialist Alan Miller says seed supplies could be tight – especially for soybeans if more farmers switch to beans for the spring. So Miller recommends farmers place their seed orders with their dealers in the next few weeks.

Berry Market Experiences Upward Trend

Rabobank’s Food and Agribusiness Research and Advisory group released a report Thursday that sales of U.S. fresh berries will continue to expand by seven-percent a year during the next three years. However – berry growers and shippers will be challenged to maintain profitability. This is due to increasing production costs, resource constraints, import competition and the market power of retailers. In 2010, the latest year for which numbers are available, North Carolina ranked third in the country in strawberry production, and in the top ten in blueberry and grape production.

Savannah River Shipping Channel Back in South Carolina Court

The South Carolina Supreme Court says the state's environmental agency violated state law in approving a permit for the $650 million deepening of the Savannah River shipping channel.

The court ruled in a decision released late last week the approval authority rested with the South Carolina Maritime Commission, not the Department of Health and Environmental Control.

The required state certification under the federal Clean Water Act has been the subject of a year of political debate in South Carolina. The Georgia ports want the channel deepened to handle larger container ships.

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has since asked Congress for an exemption from having to get South Carolina approval of the permit. It says the exemption would prevent what it calls inappropriate delays with the project.

South Carolina Extends Deadline for Survey

The Laboratory and Consumer Services division of the South Carolina Department of Agriculture (SCDA) is extending the deadline for a survey to determine disposal locations for South Carolina farmers, foresters, and nurserymen, to safely dispose of old, outdated, unusable, or unwanted pesticides. This is the second phase of the South Carolina Waste Pesticide Recovery Program.

The survey is to help the SCDA determine disposal locations and quantity. You can print out the survey to fax or mail, or complete it online by December 15th. To see it online click here. is dedicated to serving the agricultural industry in the Carolinas and Virginia with the latest ag news, exclusive regional weather station readings, and key crop market information. The website is a companion of the Southern Farm Network, provider of daily agricultural radio programming to the Carolinas since 1974. presents radio programs, interviews and news relevant to crop and livestock production and research throughout the mid-Atlantic agricultural community.