March 2017 Southeastern Peanut Farmer

The March 2017 issue of the Southeastern Peanut Farmer is now available online.
Click here!

march2017sepf_coverThis issue features:

  • 2,4-D and Dicamba Dangers
  • Peanut Weed Guidebook
  • Florida Peanut Producers Association holds 42nd annual meeting
  • Mississippi Peanut Growers holds annual meeting and trade show
  • Alabama-Florida Peanut Trade Show held in February
  • Branch named Outstanding Georgia Young Peanut Farmer
  • Peanut industry provides relief in times of disaster
  • Check off reports from the state grower organizations
  • Legislative Update
  • Southern Peanut Growers Update
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Peanut industry provides relief in times of disaster

The Georgia Peanut Commission delivers peanut butter to Bullard Farms in Cook County, Georgia. Pictured left to right are Joy Crosby, GPC director of communications, Jason Bullard, farmer from Adel, Ga., and Lamar Ray, director of the Cook County Emergency Management Agency.

The Georgia Peanut Commission delivers peanut butter to Bullard Farms in Cook County, Georgia. Pictured left to right are Joy Crosby, GPC director of communications, Jason Bullard, farmer from Adel, Ga., and Lamar Ray, director of the Cook County Emergency Management Agency.

The U.S peanut industry united to donate more than 60,000 jars of peanut butter to victims of the recent  tornadoes that swept across the Southeast.

Peanut butter has seven grams of  protein per serving, is shelf stable, requires no refrigeration or special    preparation and is enjoyable for all age groups, making it a natural choice for those who suddenly find themselves suffering from food insecurity or in a   natural disaster.

In early January, after the first round of storms, Peanut Proud donated 2,000 jars of peanut butter which was used in Dougherty County, Georgia, food relief packages. The packages went to low-income school children in a hard hit area. These kids were out of school and their damaged homes were without power for over 10 days. All were on free school lunch/breakfast program and did not have access to this program with the schools closed and without power. Teachers from the affected schools delivered the packages to their students. Thousands of PB&J sandwiches in bag meals were   distributed daily all over the area to storm victims in the weeks following the storm.

A second set of storms hit the Southeast Jan. 21 and 22 affecting Petal, Mississippi and several towns in Southwest Georgia with major damage in Albany, Ashburn and Adel.
Since those storms, Peanut Proud has raised more than $50,000 in donations from the Georgia Peanut Commission, the National Peanut Board, Texas Peanut Producers, Olam Edible Nuts, Birdsong Peanuts, National Peanut Buying Point Association, the American Peanut Shellers Association, LMC and Peanut Butter for the Hungry. Peanut Proud also received peanut butter donations from Kroger Company, J.B. Sanfilippo & Son and Golden Boy Foods.

“We are overwhelmed by the continuing generosity of Georgia’s farming community,” says Eliza McCall, chief marketing officer with Second Harvest of South Georgia. “This donation from the peanut industry will go a long way toward helping us care for our   neighbors in need.”

The peanut butter has been delivered to disaster relief organizations, local churches and food banks in Georgia and Mississippi.

For additional information on the project, visit www.peanutproud.com.

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Damaged irrigation pivots leave farmers without key farming tools

2017_01_27_tornadodamage_54sDeadly storms that ravaged much of south Georgia Jan. 20-22 also damaged or destroyed many irrigation pivots that supply needed water to agricultural crops.

According to University of Georgia Cooperative Extension specialists, irrigation systems in Calhoun, Turner, Wilcox and Worth counties were damaged by the storm systems that included multiple tornadoes.

As a result, many Georgia farmers are now choosing crops for the upcoming growing season with limited means of irrigation in mind. Farmers without pivot irrigation or access to irrigation are more likely to switch to growing peanuts or cotton, said Calvin Perry, superintendent of UGA’s C.M. Stripling Irrigation Research Park in Camilla, Georgia.

“If a farmer has multiple pivots and only one or two are damaged, those fields may get cotton or peanuts where water isn’t as vital as it is for corn. If the farmer also grows corn or sweet corn, he’s very unlikely to put corn or sweet corn where he can’t water,” Perry said.

Irrigation dealers have to order pivots months in advance, and the manpower needed to repair the damage could become an issue with so many systems damaged throughout south Georgia. Perry is not optimistic that damaged irrigation systems can be replaced before the end of the growing season, especially for corn growers who typically harvest corn in the middle of summer.

According to UGA Extension irrigation specialist Wes Porter, the majority of the damage involved pivot towers being flipped. Pivots that sustained significant structural damage can’t walk the field without repairs or replacement.

Perry and Porter said most farmers likely have insurance on their systems, some of which can cost over $100,000 depending on the length of the system and the size of the field it covers.

The damage would have been worse if crops were already planted and growing in the affected fields.

“This has definitely added a whole new level of complexity to our farmers’ decision-making. I think the worst time that something like this could happen would be in the middle of the growing season. After you get that crop growing and have a storm come through, that would be the worst,” Perry said. “Fortunately, we don’t have crops planted yet. Maybe they can make some adjustments to where they plant certain crops on their farms.”

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Georgia Peanut Farm Show provides a day of education for farmers

More than 1,400 attendees were able to fine-tune their farming operations with information gained at the 41st annual Georgia Peanut Farm Show and Conference on Jan. 19, 2017, at the University of Georgia Tifton Campus Conference Center in Tifton, Georgia. The show is sponsored by the Georgia Peanut Commission.

The one-day show offered farmers a chance to view the products and services of more than 110 exhibitors, as well as a day of education. The University of Georgia Peanut Team presented an educational peanut production seminar focusing on advanced irrigation management. An industry seed seminar was held which highlighted peanut varieties available for 2017.

Pictured left to right: Armond Morris, GPC chairman; Special Award - Don McGough, Georgia Farm Bureau; Research & Education Award - Dean Sam Pardue, University of Georgia (accepting for President Jere W. Morehead); Special Award - John Harrell, farmer leader from Whigham, Ga.; Promotion Award – George Harter with Kroger Company; Outstanding Georgia Young Peanut Farmer Award - Brandon Branch of Baxley, Ga.; Media Award – Brian Hughes with RFDTV and David Hinson, business representative with BASF.

Pictured left to right: Armond Morris, GPC chairman; Special Award – Don McGough, Georgia Farm Bureau; Research & Education Award – Dean Sam Pardue, University of Georgia (accepting for President Jere W. Morehead); Special Award – John Harrell, farmer leader from Whigham, Ga.; Promotion Award – George Harter with Kroger Company; Outstanding Georgia Young Peanut Farmer Award – Brandon Branch of Baxley, Ga.; Media Award – Brian Hughes with RFDTV and David Hinson, business representative with BASF.

The Georgia Peanut Commission presented awards to individuals and businesses for their service to the peanut industry and promotion of peanuts across the United States. The award recipients are: Distinguished Service Award – Gov. Nathan Deal; Research and Education Award – Jere W. Morehead, president of the University of Georgia; Promotion Award – The Kroger Company; Media Award – RFD-TV; and Georgia Peanut Special Awards to John Harrell, past chairman of the National Peanut Board and Don McGough, director of the commodities/marketing department with Georgia Farm Bureau. The Georgia Peanut Commission board members also recognized Kelley Manufacturing Co. for their 50 years of agribusiness within the peanut industry.

Brandon Branch of Baxley, Ga., receives Outstanding Georgia Young Peanut Farmer Award for 2017 during the 41st annual Georgia Peanut Farm Show held Jan. 19, 2017 in Tifton, Ga. Pictured left to right: Armond Morris, chairman of the Georgia Peanut Commission, Branch and David Hinson, business representative with BASF.

Brandon Branch of Baxley, Ga., receives Outstanding Georgia Young Peanut Farmer Award for 2017 during the 41st annual Georgia Peanut Farm Show held Jan. 19, 2017 in Tifton, Ga. Pictured left to right: Armond Morris, chairman of the Georgia Peanut Commission, Branch and David Hinson, business representative with BASF.

The Outstanding Georgia Young Peanut Farmer Award, sponsored by the Georgia Peanut Commission and BASF, was presented to Brandon Branch of Baxley, Georgia. The award is presented to one Georgia peanut farmer based upon the applicant’s overall farm operation; environmental and stewardship practices; and leadership and community service activities. Branch, a third-generation farmer, operates a 1,500 acre diversified row crop operation including peanuts, cotton, corn, soybeans and wheat as well as a custom harvesting enterprise.

On the farm, Branch strives to keep up-to-date with ag technology which enables him to be more efficient. To remain sustainable, Branch has constructed terraces on land that is highly erodible and constructed grass waterways to manage water and prevent soil erosion. He takes a proactive approach to educate the public regarding the practices he implements on the farm to preserve land, soil and water through farm tours.

Branch is also active in the agricultural industry and his community. He is president of the Appling County Young Farmers and serves as the South Region Junior Director for the Georgia Young Farmers Association. He is also active with the Appling County Farm Bureau and serves on the Appling County High School Agriculture Department Advisory Committee. Branch receives a sign to display at his farm and a trip to the Southern Peanut Growers Conference in July.

Outstanding Georgia Peanut Farmers of the Year District Winners: (left to right) Matt Cato, Agri Supply; District 1 - John Bridges Sr., Brinson, Ga.; Tim Burch, GPC board member from Baker County; District 2 - Ken Hall Sr., Ty Ty, Ga.; Armond Morris, GPC chairman from Irwinville, Ga.; District 3 - Jon Burns, Newington, Ga.; Joe Boddiford, GPC board member from Sylvania, Ga.; District 4 - Richard Nutt, Pitts, Ga.; Rodney Dawson, GPC board member from Hawkinsville, Ga.; District 5 - Glen Lee Chase, Oglethorpe, Ga.; and Donald Chase, GPC board member from Oglethorpe, Ga.

Outstanding Georgia Peanut Farmers of the Year District Winners: (left to right) Matt Cato, Agri Supply; District 1 – John Bridges Sr., Brinson, Ga.; Tim Burch, GPC board member from Baker County; District 2 – Ken Hall Sr., Ty Ty, Ga.; Armond Morris, GPC chairman from Irwinville, Ga.; District 3 – Jon Burns, Newington, Ga.; Joe Boddiford, GPC board member from Sylvania, Ga.; District 4 – Richard Nutt, Pitts, Ga.; Rodney Dawson, GPC board member from Hawkinsville, Ga.; District 5 – Glen Lee Chase, Oglethorpe, Ga.; and Donald Chase, GPC board member from Oglethorpe, Ga.

In addition to the Outstanding Georgia Young Peanut Farmer Award, the Georgia Peanut Commission and Agri Supply presented the Outstanding Georgia Peanut Farmers of the Year Award to individuals representing each of the commission’s five districts. The GPC board members started this award to honor farmers each year who have the passion, diligence, leadership and desire to see the peanut industry in the state of Georgia continue to be the highest quality. Winners include: District 1 – John Bridges Sr., Brinson; District 2 – Kenneth Hall Sr., Tifton; District 3 – Rep. Jon Burns, Newington; District 4 – Richard Nutt, Pitts; and District 5 – Glen Lee Chase, Oglethorpe. These farmers received a sign to display at their farm and a $100 gift card from Agri Supply.

At the close of the day, the presentation of the Grand Door Prize package donated by Kelley Manufacturing Co. was presented to Aaron Cosby of Smithville, Georgia, and Alex Hardy of Hawkinsville, Georgia. Cosby received one season’s use of a new six-row KMC peanut combine and the option of purchasing the combine from a KMC dealer with $15,000 off the list price at the end of the 2017 season. Hardy received one season’s use of a new digger shaker inverter and the option of purchasing the peanut digger from a KMC dealer with 10 percent off the list price at the end of the 2017 season.

Amadas Industries also provided the Grower Door Prize to Al Rowland of Wrightsville, Georgia. Rowland received one season’s use of a new Amadas four-row or six-row peanut digger or a certificate good for the amount of $10,000 towards the purchase of a new Amadas self-propelled combine or $5,000 towards the purchase of any new Amadas pull-type peanut combine.

For photos and additional information on the Georgia Peanut Farm Show and Conference visit the Georgia Peanut Commission website at gapeanuts.com.

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Jan/Feb 2017 Southeastern Peanut Farmer

The Jan/Feb 2017 issue of the Southeastern Peanut Farmer is now available online.
Click here!

sepf_janfeb2017_cvrwebThis issue features:

  • Peanut Variety Guidebook
  • Peanut plant collection – A national treasure
  • Peanut Leadership Academy begins Class X
  • Kelley Manufacturing Co. celebrates 50 years
  • Special Review of the 41st annual Georgia Peanut Farm Show
  • Check off reports from the state grower organizations
  • Legislative Update
  • Southern Peanut Growers Update
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Mississippi Peanut Growers Association annual meeting set for Jan. 25-26, 2017

MPGAlogo_rgbThe Mississippi Peanut Growers Association plan to hold their annual meeting and trade show Jan. 25-26, 2017, on the campus of Mississippi State University in Bost Building B. The event provides growers with the latest information on peanut production, research and new products.
Growers will have the opportunity to visit with several exhibitors showcasing equipment and services for the peanut industry.
Speakers during the annual meeting will provide an update on Mississippi State University, agronomic practices, the peanut grading system, peanut herbicides, peanut market outlook for 2017, managing foliar and soil-borne diseases as well as managing thrips and defoliating caterpillars. Growers will also hear reports on checkoff activities of MPGA and the National Peanut Board.

View 2017 Meeting Agenda

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National Peanut Board elects 2017 officers

2017 NPB Officers

National Peanut Board 2017 officers are (l-r) Greg Gill, Arkansas, vice-chairman; Ed White, Alabama, chairman; Peter Froese Jr., Texas, secretary; and Dan Ward, North Carolina, treasurer.

Ed White, a peanut farmer from Headland, Ala. was elected chairman of the 12-member National Peanut Board on Dec. 7 during the Board’s quarterly meeting in Washington, D.C. White, who is the Alabama member and recently served as the Board’s 2016 vice-chairman, will begin his one-year term Jan. 1.

“It’s quite an honor that my fellow board members had enough faith in me to elect me as chairman,” White says. “I look forward to playing a key role in advancing the board’s mission of   improving grower economics through funding compelling research and   increasing consumer consumption of peanuts.”

National Peanut Board also elected Greg Gill of Walnut Ridge, Arkansas, as vice-chairman; Dan Ward of Clarkton, North Carolina, as treasurer; and Peter Froese Jr. of Seminole, Texas, as secretary. These officers will serve one-year terms beginning Jan. 1.

USDA officially instated new and reappointed board members and alternates, who will begin three-year terms Jan. 1. Board members sworn in were Greg Gill, Arkansas, Jim Chandler, New Mexico and Les Crall, Oklahoma. Alternates sworn in were Greg Baltz, Arkansas, Karen Jackson, New Mexico and Gayle White, Oklahoma. Gayle White is NPB’s immediate past-chairman.

National Peanut Board would like to recognize outgoing board member Wayne Baker, New Mexico, and thank him for his years of service to the peanut industry.

For more information on the National Peanut Board, visit their website at nationalpeanutboard.org.

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Georgia Peanut Farm Show and Conference set for Thursday, Jan. 19

fsconflogoProducers can improve the bottom-line of their farming operation with knowledge, connections and information gained at the 41st annual Georgia Peanut Farm Show and Conference, held at the University of Georgia Tifton Campus Conference Center, Jan. 19, 2017, from 8:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Peanut farmers and those involved in the peanut industry will be able to learn more about the latest products, services and peanut research at the 2017 Georgia Peanut Farm Show and Conference. The show is sponsored by the Georgia Peanut Commission.

During this year’s show, Kelley Manufacturing Co. is providing the Grand Door Prize Package of one season’s use of a new six-row peanut combine. At the end of the 2017 season the winner has the option of purchasing the combine from a KMC dealer with $15,000 off the list price. Also, KMC is providing a second drawing for one season’s use of a new Digger Shaker Inverter (choice of a two-row, four-row, six-row or Flex model). At the end of the 2017 season, the winner has the option of purchasing the peanut digger from an authorized KMC dealer with 10 percent off the list price.

Additionally, farmers can register to win the Grower Prize, donated by Amadas Industries. This prize is the choice of one season’s use of a new Amadas four-row or six-row peanut digger/inverter or a certificate good for the amount of $10,000 towards the purchase of a new Amadas self-propelled combine or $5,000 towards the purchase of a new four-row or six-row Amadas pull-type combine.

The winners of the Grand Door Prize and the Grower Prize must be certified peanut farmers with an FSA farm number.

The one-day show offers farmers a full day to view the products and services of more than 100 exhibitors and a day of education. A free luncheon begins at noon for all peanut farmers in attendance. The Georgia Peanut Commission will present a short program beginning at 12:15 p.m. that will cover award presentations and an update from National Peanut Board and Washington. The University of Georgia will present an educational peanut production seminar from 9:00 until 10:30 a.m. with a special focus on irrigation management.

An Industry Seed Seminar will also be held from 10:35 to 11:35 a.m. during the show. This event is sponsored by the American Peanut Shellers Association, Southern Peanut Farmers Federation and the Georgia Peanut Commission. Growers will be able to learn about seed quality and quantity for 2017, peanut varieties available for 2017 and on the horizon, production advice and the peanut genomic initiative.

Farmers will also have the opportunity to earn credit towards their private or commercial pesticide applicators certification.

The Georgia Peanut Commission, in cooperation with One Blood, will hold a blood drive from 8:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. at the UGA Tifton Campus Conference Center during the show.

At the close of the day, the presentation of the Grand Door Prize donated by KMC will be presented to one lucky peanut grower. For more information on the show, contact GPC at 229-386-3470 or online at www.gapeanuts.com.

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Oct/Nov 2016 issue of the Southeastern Peanut Farmer

sepf_octnov2016_cvrThe Oct/Nov 2016 issue of the Southeastern Peanut Farmer is now available online.
Click here!

This issue features:

  • Precision planting
  • Arkansas farmer of the year is a new peanut farmer
  • Peanut Leadership Academy graduates Class IX
  • Check off reports from the state grower organizations
  • Legislative Update
  • Southern Peanut Growers Update
Posted in Alabama News, Florida News, General, Georgia News, Legislative, Mississippi News | Leave a comment

Producers Pod Blasting to Determine Peanut Maturity

Regional Extension Agent, Rudy Yates, uses a pressure washer to pod blast in Lowndes County.Pod blasting is an improved method farmers use to determine optimum peanut maturity for harvest.

For many years, peanut producers used the pod scraping method, where pocketknives—or other sharp objects—were used to scrape away the outer layers of the shell. Alabama Cooperative Extension SystemPeanut Research Associate, Kris Balkcom, said the widely adopted use of lightweight pressure washers has allowed producers to determine peanut maturity with relative ease.

Pod blasting requires different equipment than pod scraping, but is a more efficient and reasonably quick process.

Balkcom suggests a lightweight pressure washer, with a PSI of 1300-1600.

“Many of the immature pods are full of water, so it is easy to tear them apart,” he said. “Using a lightweight pressure washer will prevent the destruction of the pods.”

Keeping pods in tact allows producers to have a more accurate maturity reading, and to plan the digging and harvest times accordingly. Mature pods are harder and do not damage as easily.

“Producers need to be able to scrape off the outer layer of the hull to see the color,” Balkcom said. “The color of the inner hull helps to determine the level of maturity.”

Balkcom and other industry and Extension professionals use a heavy metal basket to aide in the pod blasting process.

Baskets are made of expansion metal with grated sides and a subfloor midway up the cylinder. The screen-like sides and subfloor allow the water to run out of the peanuts, taking the outer hulls with it. After blasting, the varied colored peanut hulls are left in the basket. Producers then use a peanut profile board to determine potential harvest time.

Determining Maturity

Pod blasting removes the outer hull of the peanut, revealing the color of the inner hull, which is what farmers use to measure maturity. Most producers use the peanut profile board to measure the average maturity level of their fields.

Peanuts on the lowest level of maturity will have white hulls. As the pods mature, they become yellow, then transition to orange, brown and black. Black pods are the most mature.

Balkcom lines the peanuts up on the profile board and uses the slope and projection lines to determine the percentage of peanuts at a certain maturity level in the field, and in turn is able to suggest a harvest date.

Producers also pay close attention to the skin color and oil spots on the peanut itself. Peanuts with light skin and dark brown oil spots are approximately seven days away from peak maturity. Peanuts with copper colored skin and brown oil spots are generally at optimum maturity levels.

Preparing to Pod Blast

Balkcom said the first step is to gather a representative sample from the field.

“Gathering a representative sample is done much like soil sampling,” he said. “You may go to scattered locations throughout the field and pull up a single plant. The goal is to have about 200 pods to sample from each location.”

Producers may use this opportunity to evaluate the strength of the peanut plant and stems. If the plant has weak stems and gathering samples leaves peanuts in the ground, Balkcom said harvest may already be behind schedule.

Once a representative sampleis gathered, pick off every pod mature enough to go through the combine at harvest. Place the pods in a bucket, or into the pod-blasting basket.

Pod Blasting Peanuts

Balkcom said pod blasting technique is important. After pouring the pods into the basket, begin washing.

The turbo nozzle on the pressure washer seems to work the best for pod blasting.

“The distance between the wand and the pods is important,” Balkcom said. “Keeping a good distance will prevent the pressure washer from destroying the peanuts.”

After washing, the outer hull will be washed off and the peanuts will be ready to place on the profile board.

“Peanuts are indeterminate, so the plants flower from 40 days of age to harvest,” he said. “There will be a mixture of all ages of peanuts in the basket. Pod blasting will help to determine the most optimum time for harvest, the best average grade and the most weight to market.”

More Information

For more information on pod blasting, visit www.aces.edu or www.AlabamaCrops.com. A webinar on pod blasting is also available. For assistance in the field, contact your county Extension agent.

Source: Katie Nichols, Alabama Cooperative Extension System

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