Vantage Southeast Loyal to Peanut Industry

Cindy Zimmerman2017 Conference, Audio, Conference Sponsors0 Comments

Vantage Southeast (formally Ag Technologies) got its start helping provide precision agriculture solutions for peanut growers and they remain a priority for the company.

“We’ve always tried to stay true to the ones the brought us to the dance,” said company representative Travis Kelly who enjoys coming back every year to see farmer customers and being part of the Southern Peanut Growers family.

“When we first started sponsoring this, we didn’t have kids but now we do…so we can come down and bring our families,” he said. “Everybody’s just so relaxed and in shorts and flip flops!”

Vantage Southeast also continues to sponsor this conference blog, which has become an archive now of every SPGC since 2008. Thanks to them and to all the sponsors for making this great conference possible!

Listen To MP3 Interview with Travis Kelly, Vantage Southeast

Check out both photo albums:

2017 SPGC Family Album

2017 Southern Peanut Growers Conference Photo Album

Alabama Peanut Efficiency Award Winner

Cindy Zimmerman2017 Conference, Audio0 Comments

For Curry Parker of Headland, Alabama, hard work and sharp eyes are his most important assets when it comes to being an efficient farmer and winner of this year’s Farm Press Peanut Efficiency Award for the lower Southeast region.

“I did it by not being lazy, do whatever the crop needs, and use my eyes to see what’s going on,” Curry said after receiving the award. He also says he does just fine without a computer. “We have the RTK on the tractors, but that’s the only technology I use,” he said.

Get to know Curry in this interview: Listen To MP3 Interview with Curry Parker, Lower SE Peanut Efficiency Award Winner

Check out both photo albums:

2017 SPGC Family Album

2017 Southern Peanut Growers Conference Photo Album

Welcome UPI to the Southern Peanut Growers Family

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It’s always wonderful to meet a new addition to the Southern Peanut Growers family and this year we had the pleasure of meeting Alexis Benge-Bromley with UPI, a global crop protection product company based in Pennsylvania.

Being a Mississippi native, Alexis felt right at home and will definitely be back again next year. “I’ve had a chance to meet with a lot of growers, and people in the industry down to the buyers point, down to the consumers,” Alexis said.

UPI (United Phosphorus, Inc.) was started in 1969 and has been a premier supplier of crop protection products and plant technologies designed for the agricultural, professional, and aquatics markets.

Welcome Alexis – and we’ll see you next year at the 20th Southern Peanut Growers Conference!

Listen To MP3 Interview with Alexis Benge-Bromley, UPI

Check out both photo albums:

2017 SPGC Family Album

2017 Southern Peanut Growers Conference Photo Album

2017 Peanut Efficiency Awards

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LtoR – Winners Curry Parker, Ray Davis, and Jake Teichroeb, Dr. Marshall Lamb

The annual Peanut Efficiency Awards were presented at the 2017 Southern Peanut Growers Conference. The annual awards presented by Farm Press are based on production proficiency, honoring growers who produce the highest yields by using inputs wisely and effectively based on a their entire farm operation.

This year’s winners are:
Lower SE Region – Curry Parker of Headland, AL
Upper SE Region – Ray Davis, Jr. of Southampton County, VA
Southwest Region – Jake Teichroeb of Welch, Texas

This is the 18th year for the award program, which was known as the Peanut Profitability Awards until 2015. Program coordinator Dr. Marshall Lamb with the USDA National Peanut Research Laboratory took an historical look at nominees for the awards over the past 17 years and found they have collectively led the way for increasing yield and adopting new technology.

“These farmers are staying ahead of the yield increases that we are seeing in the United States,” said Lamb. When the program first started, the national average yield was 2,860 pounds per acre, but award nominees averaged 4,400 pounds per acre. In recent years, nominees have averaged 6,300 pounds per acre compared to the national average of 3,800 pounds per acre.

Learn more in this interview with Marshall:

Listen To MP3 Interview with Marshall Lamb, USDA Peanut Research Lab

Southern Peanut Growers Conference Photo Album

Georgia Farmers Have Friend at USDA

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Georgia peanut farmers have one of their own in the Trump administration as Secretary of Agriculture.

Don Koehler with the Georgia Peanut Commission says he got to know Sonny Perdue when he was a farmer. “He actually grew peanuts on his farm,” Don says. “He’s a man with a heart for agriculture.”

As a real farmer who understands peanuts, Perdue will certainly have his input into the making of the next farm bill, but Don says Congress ultimately makes the final decision so Georgia farmers are sending the message that they are happy with the current peanut program.

“Our program’s working right now,” says Don Koehler with the Georgia Peanut Commission. “It gives us stability and gives us the ability to make decisions.”

Don says the Southern Peanut Farmers Federation recently launched the Peanut Program Works website and video to educate people about the program and encourage Congress to keep it when they start drafting a new farm bill. Watch the video below and share.

Listen To MP3 Interview with Don Koehler, Georgia Peanut Commission

Southern Peanut Growers Conference Photo Album

Peanut Program Works from Southern Peanut Farmers Fed. on Vimeo.

Informed Ag and Ag Leader

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Helping farmers make informed decisions about their crops is the goal of Informed Ag, an Ag Leader dealer based in Auburn, Alabama.

Lead engineer Rees Bridges brought his professional engineering career back to the farm to start a consulting business. “Peanuts in the area where I grew up (in south Georgia) were kind of the blood of life,” said Bridges. “It’s been a blessing being back in the ag community.”

Research, Analyze, Optimize is the Informed Ag slogan – learn more about the company and Rees in this interview:
Listen To MP3 Interview with Rees Bridges, Informed Ag

Southern Peanut Growers Conference Photo Album

Setting Peanut Priorities for the Farm Bill

Cindy Zimmerman2017 Conference, Audio0 Comments

Every farm bill gets a little more difficult to pass with an increasingly urban Congress, which is why the peanut industry needs an advocate like Bob Redding in Washington, D.C.

Redding has already been involved in early farm bill preparations, such as the first listening session held recently in Gainesville, Florida. This week he will be at the Senate Agriculture Committee hearing on commodities, credit, and crop insurance, where Meredith Rogers of Camilla, Georgia will be providing testimony for the Southern peanut industry.

“Meredith is a double Dawg, she has two degrees from the University of Georgia and has been involved with her family farm for over 20 years, and we are pleased to have her testifying,” said Redding.

In this interview Redding discusses the benefits of the current peanut program and why growers would like to see it kept as is in the new farm bill.
Listen To MP3 Interview with Bob Redding, peanut lobbyist

Southern Peanut Growers Conference Photo Album

Opening Night Nut Show

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The Nuts vs the Sprouts in a Battle of the Generations Nut Show made for a fun night of entertainment at the welcoming dinner sponsored by Bayer.

Welcome reception sponsors Birdsong Peanuts and Kelley Manufacturing chose teams for the older generation versus the younger generation and Jimmy Laska’s team of old timers could name that tune from Motown to Uptown Funk and every stop in between!

John Hand with Bayer was delayed arriving and missed opening night but did make it in the next day. Bayer continues to be a strong supporter of the peanut industry and this year introduced Propulse for peanut growers. “Propulse is a product we can use about 45-60 days after planting to give us a fungicide application as well as another nematicide boost,” John says.

Learn more about Bayer’s peanut portfolio in this interview.

Listen To MP3 Interview with John Hand, Bayer

Southern Peanut Growers Conference Photo Album

Updates on Alabama and Mississippi Peanuts

Cindy Zimmerman2017 Conference, Audio0 Comments

The Alabama peanut crop is looking good, according to Alabama Peanut Producers Association Executive Director Caleb Bristow, and farmers are definitely interested in learning more about the navigating the market place for their crop.

“Really it’s a complete 180 from where we were last year,” Bristow said of the market for peanuts this year.

As far as what Alabama farmers would like to see in a new farm bill, Bristow says they are happy with the peanut program as it is. “Obviously the big debate is generic acres and what happens there and we hope cotton fixes that,” he said.

Listen To MP3 Interview with Caleb Bristow, Alabama Peanut Producers

Malcolm Broome with the Mississippi Peanut Growers Association says farmers in his state would also like to see the peanut program stay as is. “We’re happy with the current 2014, it’s worked pretty good for us,” he said.

And Broome says the peanut crop also looks good in his state, but could be a little drier. “I hate to say we need dry weather but we’ve got some folks trying to spray some peanuts and they’re bogging the spray rigs down,” he added.

Listen To MP3 Interview with Malcolm Broome, Mississippi Peanut Growers

Southern Peanut Growers Conference Photo Album

Reps. Rogers and Scott at 2017 SPGC

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U.S. Representatives Mike Rogers (R-AL) and Austin Scott (R-GA) both shared their perspectives on the new administration, gridlock in Congress, and the outlook for a 2018 farm bill at the 2017 Southern Peanut Growers Conference Saturday.

“It’s going to be a tough fight, I don’t want anybody to fool themselves,” said Rep. Rogers about getting the next farm bill passed in Congress. He says he would like to see the legislation – which is about 80 percent nutrition programs – split just for a vote to see who votes for or against. “Neither one of them will pass on their own, but it’ll show us who our friends are.”

Rep. Scott says his number one concern is to make sure “we don’t get splits between the commodity groups and within the commodity groups” with respect to farm programs. “I think one of the big debates in the farm bill will be planted acres versus base acres, I can tell you it’s coming,” he said. “The discussion of permanent law versus temporary law is another issue that we’re going to have some honest discussion about.”

Other topics the Congressmen addressed in their remarks and interview afterwards include infrastructure legislation, the recent farm bill listening session held in Florida, and more.

Listen here:

Listen To MP3 Remarks from Reps. Mike Rogers and Austin Scott

Listen To MP3 Interview with Reps. Austin Scott and Mike Rogers

Southern Peanut Growers Conference Photo Album