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
Posted in Alabama News, Florida News, General, Georgia News, Legislative, Mississippi News | Leave a comment

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

Posted in Mississippi News | Leave a comment

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.

Posted in Alabama News, Florida News, General, Georgia News, Mississippi News | Leave a comment

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.

Posted in General, Georgia News | Leave a comment

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

Posted in Alabama News, General | Leave a comment

Made in Rural America Workshop strives to help exports

MIRA Invitation - Valdosta hdrWASHINGTON, July 14, 2016—The White House Rural Council (WHRC), today announced a workshop series to provide targeted assistance for rural small businesses working to grow demand through international sales. The announcement was made by WHRC Chair Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack, Commerce Secretary Penny Pritzker and Deputy Postmaster General Ronald A. Stroman.

The free series includes at least 60 Made in Rural America small business export workshops hosted by the U.S. Postal Service (USPS) in 24 states July 26 to Aug. 31, 2016. One workshop will be held in Valdosta, Georgia on Aug. 23, 2016 from 11:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. Click here to view the agenda and register online. Partners including the U.S. Department of Commerce’s International Trade Administration, USDA Rural Business Service, the Appalachian Regional Commission, Delta Regional Authority, National Association of Counties and others will also provide local and regional expertise in international shipping and mailing, international marketing assistance, rural business development and related topics.

To find a Made in Rural American workshop in your area visit usps.com/events and click your state. The site will be updated as details for each workshop becomes available and additional workshops are added. Online tools designed for rural businesses interested in international exports include www.export.gov/rural and www.business.usa.gov.

Census data from 2009 to 2014 (latest available) shows that the ranks of U.S. goods exporters rose from 277,000 to 304,000—and 98 percent of those companies were small and medium-sized firms. U.S. exports reached $2.26 trillion in 2015, up by $678 billion from 2009, and supported 1.9 million more jobs during the period.

U.S. agricultural exports alone supported more than 1 million American jobs both on and off the farm, a substantial part of the estimated 11.5 million jobs supported by exports all across our country. The past seven years have represented the strongest period in history for American agricultural exports, with international sales of U.S. farm and food products totaling $911.4 billion between fiscal years 2009 and 2015. In fiscal year 2015, American farmers and ranchers exported $139.7 billion of food and agricultural goods to consumers worldwide.

Posted in General, Georgia News | Leave a comment

July/August issue of the Southeastern Peanut Farmer

julyaug_2016cvrThe July/August 2016 issue of the Southeastern Peanut Farmer is now available online.
Click here!

This issue features:

  • 2016 Harvest Guidebook
  • Using Social Media for Agvocacy
  • Georgia Peanut Tour set for Sept. 13-15, 2016
  • Check off reports from the state grower organizations
  • Legislative Update
  • Southern Peanut Growers Update
Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Applications are now being accepted for Peanut Leadership Academy Class X

2009leaderlogoApplications are now being accepted for Class X of the Peanut Leadership Academy. To be eligible for participation, candidates must derive their primary livelihood from farming and currently produce peanuts, make a commitment to the program and agree to attend all sessions except in times of illness or a family emergency, be between the ages of 30 and 45 (preferred, but not required) and provide a completed application.

The Peanut Leadership Academy is a cooperative effort between Syngenta Crop Protection, the American Peanut Shellers Association and grower organizations. The program began in 1998 with the first class of 14 peanut growers from Alabama, Florida and Georgia. Since then, the academy has continued to grow to include growers from Texas, Mississippi , North Carolina, Virginia and sheller representatives.

During the program, participants are taught how to become more effective spokespeople for the peanut industry, develop industry relationships and further grow their leadership skills. Five sessions take place throughout the 18 month class and require approximately 20 days of travel. During these sessions, activities are structured to give participants a thorough understanding of the U.S. peanut industry and include field trips, meetings with industry leaders and professional development training. Each class also has one leadership session in Washington, D.C. where class members have an opportunity to visit with their congressmen about issues affecting the peanut industry.

To download a copy of the upcoming class application, click here. Applications must be postmarked by Sept. 1, 2016, for consideration. The first session will begin in December 2016.

Posted in Alabama News, Florida News, General, Georgia News, Mississippi News | Leave a comment

New online book provides best practices for feral swine management

p2659_0-1Every year, Alabama farmers suffer $50 million to $100 million in crop losses due to feral swine damage.

A new publication from Mississippi State University Extension Service and Alabama Cooperative Extension System aims to arm farmers in the fight against feral swine damage to lower annual crop losses. The book includes a brief history of feral swine in the U.S. and detailed information on trapping and management.

“Feral swine are a nuisance to farmers, and they carry diseases that pose a threat to humans and other animals,” said William Green, commodity director for the Alabama Farmers Federation. “This book provides practical information farmers can use to hopefully stop the spread of feral hog populations and keep them off their farms.”

Wild pigs can adapt to different climates, which has allowed them to move from mostly southeastern states in 1988 to northern states, including Wisconsin, Michigan and New Hampshire, by 2013. They reproduce at a fast rate and have very few natural predators.

Click here to view the online version of the book, “A Landowner’s Guide for Wild Pig Management: Practical Methods for Wild Pig Control.”

Posted in Alabama News, General, Mississippi News | Leave a comment