Ag News

Peanut growers getting solid return on NPB investment

by Georgia Farm Bureau

Posted on Jan 22, 2020 at 0:00 AM

National Peanut Board (NPB) Communications Director Lauren Highfill Williams shared the results of the NPB’s recent return on investment study and outlined a pair of initiatives the NBP will be focusing on in 2020.

Williams, who spoke during the annual Georgia Peanut Farm Show on Jan. 16 in Tifton, said the peanut growers get back $9.74 for every dollar spent on the NPB, which conducts a return on investment study every five years.

“We’re really happy with those numbers, but we’re not resting on our laurels,” Williams said. “We’re continuing to push really hard and work really hard for the American growers and the American peanut farmers.”

The NPB plans to launch a new marketing campaign called “Spreading Good” on Jan. 24, which is National Peanut Butter Day. Williams said the campaign will target the millennial generation, which collectively values actions that have a positive effect on their families, communities and the wider world.

The NPB is also planning enhanced efforts to communicate the value of introducing peanut butter to babies as a way to prevent peanut allergies. The work will include continued outreach to new parents and medical professionals.

Among peanut seed varieties, there is no question which is preferred by Georgia peanut growers. Virtually any way peanut seed performance is measured, the Georgia 06G variety of peanut seed is at or near the best. It has the lowest incidence of tomato spotted wilt virus, second lowest incidence of disease occurrence, third highest total sound mature kernels, the second-largest seed size and the second highest value per acre.

In 2019, Georgia growers chose 06G for 86.7% of their planted acres, according to UGA peanut breeder Bill Branch, who presented seed variety information to growers during the Georgia Peanut Farm Show Seed Seminar.

During the seminar, peanut farmers also heard tips from UGA Extension Peanut Specialist Scott Montfort, who advised growers to take soil samples, make sure they buy quality seed, ask about germination percentages and check seed in the bag before planting.

He also encouraged growers to pay attention to their equipment setup and to make sure they are adjusting planting depth and tractor speed accordingly. The planting period with the highest yield potential, he said, is from late April until May 12.

Georgia Crop Improvement Association Executive Director Terry Hollifield told growers that 2019 was the first year in his career that GCIA heard no complaints about peanut seed. He said that despite a smaller crop in 2019, there would be plenty of quality seed available for planting in 2020.

The Georgia Peanut Commission (GPC) presented its annual awards during lunch.

Retiring Sen. Johnny Isakson was named to the Georgia Peanut Hall of Fame for his career-long advocacy in Washington for Georgia agriculture.

Washington County Farm Bureau Director Jonathan Hitchcock received the 2020 Outstanding Young Peanut Farmer of the Year Award.

The GPC presented Special Awards to Peanut Butter & Jesus, a Tifton-based outreach organization, and Southern Ag Carriers.

Media Awards went to David Maxwell and the late John Leidner. Maxwell is the managing editor of the Donalsonville News. Leidner, who passed away in June 2019, worked as the Southeast Regional Editor for Progressive Farmer magazine and worked closely with Sunbelt Expo.

Retiring UGA-Tifton Campus Administrator Joe West was presented with the Distinguished Service Award.

The GPC also presented five Outstanding Georgia Peanut Farmer of the Year awards, one for each district: District 1, Jud Green (posthumously), Brinson; District 2, Charles Paulk, Ocilla; District 3, Wade McElveen, Brooklet; District 4, Ronney S. Ledford Sr., Vienna; and District 5, Mike McLendon, Oglethorpe.

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