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Plans for NC Tobacco to go to China Still on

North Carolina Department of Agriculture’s Peter Thornton, Assistant Director, considers his recent meeting with China Tobacco, in Shanghai to be a success:

“Yhey continue to be very optimistic about the North Carolina market and I think when you look at what’s happening in Brazil and the price of the Real and the instability in Africa, North Carolina become more and more important. The region as a whole becomes more important to international buyers because they need that security and diversity of supply. You are going to get that security with better quality, a better commitment, and more integrity that you are going to find out of Tobacco produced out of North Carolina and they recognize that.” 

For more on the trade mission to China, visit our website, SFNToday dot com.

Consumer Spending on the Rise

The Commerce Department says consumer spending was up in February, rising by 0.8 percent. Editor-at-Large Jill Schlesinger says that's good and bad news:

“Energy costs have risen 3.6% in February, that’s the largest gain in nearly a year. That’s the big part of spending and I think that could really be curbing the way consumers are looking at their overall financial lives.” 

State agriculture officials are warning horse owners not to get complacent about vaccinating their horses.

Time to Vaccinate for EEE and West Nile

Last year, there was only one confirmed case of West Nile Virus in horses and there were no cases of Eastern Equine Encephalitis. But the Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services says the number of horses affected in previous years and in other states was much higher.
The vaccinations last six to 12 months, so officials say horses should be injected at least annually.

West Nile Virus kills up to 30 percent of horses who contract it, while Eastern Equine Encephalitis kills up to 90 percent.

Gypsy Moth Traps Being Set Out

The N.C. Department of Agriculture will soon begin its annual survey for the non-native, highly destructive gypsy moth. Starting in early April, orange triangular traps and green milk carton-shaped traps will be placed on both public and private lands throughout North Carolina to monitor for the presence of the gypsy moth. The nearly 12,000 traps will give state agricultural officials an accurate location of any gypsy moth populations in North Carolina, which will be important in determining future control efforts. 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.