Member of the NCDA &CS International Trade Office Receives Award

Cathy Ma, an international trade specialist with the N.C. Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, received the Governor’s Award for Excellence for Outstanding State Government Service. In her role with the NCDA&CS International Trade Office, Ma works with processed food, meat and seafood producers across the state to identify market opportunities abroad. She also coordinates international trade missions, hosts inbound missions and organizes trade shows for food producers. Earlier this year, Ma was recognized by the Southern United States Trade Association at its annual meeting in Louisiana. She won in three categories: Most Companies Recruited for an Inbound Trade Mission; Most New Companies for Overseas Generic Event; and Activity Manager of the Year for 2011. Ma also received the 2011 Employee of the Year Award from the N.C. Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services.

Shop one of the three State Farmers Markets this Weekend for the Perfect Christmas Tree

South Carolina grown Christmas trees are now available at each of the three State Farmers Markets. Each market has a great selection of Christmas trees including some South Carolina varieties. The three state-owned farmers markets are in west Columbia, Greenville, and the Pee Dee Farmers Market in Florence. For more information on the three State Farmers Markets, hours of operation and driving directions visit

Former Ag Secretary Talks Fiscal Cliff, Farm Bill and Estate Tax

The fiscal cliff is looming in the near future. Former Secretary of Agriculture Mike Johanns, now US Senator from Nebraska, says there is a path to the budget deal but it’s a two-step process…

“Let’s solve the problem now. Lets bring certainty to year end and put in place the process to solve these issues long term. Then I think we can get there. We surely cant reform the tax code entitlements in 30 days.”

The mood in D.C. – Johanns says – is one of anxiety because the vast majority believe falling off the fiscal cliff is bad economic policy. He says people are anxious to see what will happen – and will be for the next few weeks.

Moisture Situation Varied Across North Carolina

In the latest crop progress report for North Carolina, there were more than 6 days suitable for field work, compared to just over five last week. Statewide soil moisture levels were rated at 7% very short, 33% short, 58% adequate and 2% surplus. The state received little or no precipitation for the week ending November 25th. Average temperatures ranged from 39 degrees to 55 degrees. Soybean and cotton harvest are in full swing

AFBF Working to Head off Tax Increases

Agriculture is making its final push to head off increases in the Estate and Capital Gains taxes in the Lame Duck Congress. The way American Farm Bureau Tax Chief Pat Wolff sees it – without Congressional action by January 1st – there will be a huge increase in Estate and Capital Gains Taxes. And AFBF is holding back nothing as it fights to preserve breaks critical to agriculture…

“Farm Bureau is engaged in a grass roots campaign. Its targeted for the next few weeks when congress will be making critical decisions and farmers and ranchers from all over the country are sending emails to their representatives saying: keep the law as it is now.” 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.