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Inside: n

Peanut Program Works website n Harvest Guidebook n Farm Bill Listening Session in Florida

A communication service of the Southern Peanut Farmers Federation.

Contents July/August 2017


Joy Carter Crosby Editor 229-386-3690

The Southern Peanut Farmers Federation recently launched a campaign website and video to showcase the benefits of the Price Loss Coverage (PLC) program in the 2014 Farm Bill and highlight its importance to farmers, their families and communities.

Director of Advertising Jessie Bland Contributing Writers John Leidner Teresa Mays Southeastern Peanut Farmer P.O. Box 706, Tifton, Ga. 31793 445 Fulwood Blvd., Tifton, Ga. 31794 ISSN: 0038-3694 Southeastern Peanut Farmer is published six times a year (Jan./Feb., March, April, May/June, July/Aug., and Oct./Nov.) by the Southern Peanut Farmers Federation. The publisher is not responsible for copy omission, typographical errors, or any unintentional errors that may occur, other than to correct it in the following issue. Any erroneous reflection which may occur in the columns of Southeastern Peanut Farmer will be corrected upon brought to the attention of the editor. (Phone 229-3863690.) Postmaster: Send address changes (Form 3579) to Southeastern Peanut Farmer, P.O. Box 706, Tifton, Georgia, 31793. Circulation is free to qualified peanut growers and others allied to the industry. Periodical postage paid at Tifton, Georgia and additional mailing office. Editorial Content: Editorial copy from sources outside of the Southern Peanut Farmers Federation is sometimes presented for the information and interest of our members. Such material may, or may not, coincide with official Southern Peanut Farmers Federation policies. Publication of material does not necessarily imply its endorsement by the Southern Peanut Farmers Federation. For editorial concerns call 229-386-3690. No portion of this or past issues of the Southeastern Peanut Farmer may be reproduced in any form whatsoever without the written consent of the editor. By-lined articles appearing in this publication represent views of the authors and not necessarily those of the publisher. Advertising: The Publisher reserves the right to refuse any advertisement. Corrections to advertisements must be made after the first run. All billing offers subject to credit review. Advertisements contained in this publication do not represent an endorsement by the Southeastern Peanut Farmer or the Southern Peanut Farmers Federation. Use of trade names in this publication is for the purpose of providing specific information and is not a guarantee nor warranty of products named. For advertising concerns call 229-386-3690.

Peanut Program Works website


Harvest Guidebook The 2017 Southeastern Peanut Farmer’s Harvest Guidebook looks at the value of peanut vines, improving the hull-scrape procedure and provides a harvest equipment maintenance checklist.


Farm Bill Listening Session The Southern Peanut Farmers Federation praised the U.S. House Agriculture Committee for holding a listening session in Florida. During the event, SPFF members testified in support of the current peanut program and the stability the program brings to farmers and local communities.

Departments: Checkoff Report .................................................................................. 8 Alabama Peanut Producers Association, Florida Peanut Producers Association, Georgia Peanut Commission and Mississippi Peanut Growers Association

Washington Outlook ............................................................................ 20 Southern Peanut Growers Update ........................................................ 22 Cover Photo: U.S. House Agriculture Commitee Chairman K. Michael Conaway, R-Texas, speaks at the Farm Bill Listening Session held June 24, 2017, in Gainesville, Fla. Photo by Joy Crosby.

July/August 2017 Southeastern Peanut Farmer


Opinion Editorial

Calendar of Events

Peanuts - A Way of Life eanuts have always been a way of life. While I also rotate cotton, corn and grass, its peanuts that my family and I depend upon. I grew up on a small farm north of Malone, Florida where my family owned 200 acres. While I learned about the volatility of peanut farming from my parents, the time I spent working at the farm credit union gave me a deep understanding about the difficult economics peanut farmers face. Instead of being behind a combine, during the early 1970s, I was behind a desk reviewing loan applications. I saw firsthand how important it was for farmers to give lenders a confident picture that they would have the means to repay their loan. Back then, we didn’t have a peanut program, and frankly lenders didn’t have as much confidence in their borrowers. Today I’m back on the farm with about 2,000 acres, and I can’t stress enough how important the peanut program is to our farms and communities. It brings a level of stability to our farms and communities that we didn’t have before the program was enacted in the 2014 Farm Bill. Without it, farmers like myself would have far fewer means to borrow the capital we need to keep our farms running. So when I hear that the Florida Peanut Federation (FPF) is proposing to dramatically lower the reference price in the upcoming farm bill and is threatening to sabotage the entire program because they want their land to arbitrarily be declared as peanut base, I wonder whose side are they on? It certainly doesn’t seem like they have the best interests of peanut-growing farm families in mind. What galls me the most is that the FPF is receiving all the benefits of market stability that are afforded to peanut farmers under the current, fair reference price for peanuts, but still it doesn’t seem enough for them. They sure weren’t complaining when the price of peanuts was upwards of $600 a ton. Now that it is down a bit, they are proposing unrealistic ways to bring more value to their land, which would blow up the entire program, harming our farms and creating economic uncertainty in communities across the southeast. Simply put, their proposal to lower the reference price should be flatly rejected. The peanut program is a market-based success story. Since peanuts are not traded on the market like most other commodities, pricing is determined long after famers make major investments in their crop. So, the peanut program gives farmers some stability that allows for long-term planning that keeps many of us in business. And that stability doesn’t just benefit farmers, it impacts entire communities. It sustains the businesses we have in Jackson County, Florida. Without the economic certainty of the peanut program, our entire supply chain – and the jobs that go with it – wouldn’t be able to survive. The accusation by the Florida Peanut Federation that the peanut program gives us an incentive to grow for the program and not the market, reveals a level of ignorance about how the program works. The peanut program does not drive planting decisions. The market determines price and what we plant. Today, demand for peanuts is growing and


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u Stripling Irrigation Research Park Field Day, July 27, 2017, University of Georgia Stripling Irrigation Research Park, Camilla, Ga. For more information call 229-522-3623. u American Peanut Shellers Association and National Peanut Buying Points Association Pre-Harvest Meeting, Aug. 1-2, 2017, Lake Blackshear Resort and Golf Club, Cordele, Ga. For more information visit or call 229-888-2508.

u Florida Peanut Field Day, Aug. 17, 2017, North Florida Research and Education Center, Marianna, Fla. For more information contact Barry Tillman at or Ethan Carter at or call 850-526-1611. u Wiregrass Crops Field Day, Aug. 18, 2017, Wiregrass Research and Extension Center, Headland, Ala. For more information contact Larry Wells at, call 334-693-2363 or u Brooklet Peanut Festival, Aug. 19, 2017. For more information visit the festival’s website at u West Florida Extension Field Day, Aug. 22, 2017, West Florida Research and Education Center, Jay, Fla. For more information email or call 850-983-7125. u Plains Peanut Festival, Sept. 23, 2017. For more information visit u Central Florida Peanut Festival, Oct. 7, 2017, Williston, Fla. For more information visit u Sunbelt Ag Expo, Oct. 17-19, 2017, Moultrie, Ga. For more information visit or call 229-985-1968.

u Georgia Peanut Festival, Oct. 21, 2017, Sylvester, Ga. For more information visit u National Peanut Festival, Nov. 3-12, 2017, Dothan, Ala. For more information visit

Larry Ford Fourth Generation Farmer from Jackson County, Florida


Southeastern Peanut Farmer July/August 2017

(Let us know about your event. Please send details to the editor at

Southern Peanut Farmers Federation launches 'Peanut Program Works' website and video he Southern Peanut Farmers Federation recently launched a campaign website,, and video to showcase the benefits of the Price Loss Coverage (PLC) program in the 2014 Farm Bill and highlight its importance to farmers, their families and communities. The website, through a series of farmer profiles, an informational video and fact points, demonstrates how so many peanut farmers rely on the stability brought to their market through the PLC program, which is known as the peanut program, and why it must be retained in the upcoming farm bill. “The peanut program works,” says Armond Morris, chairman of the Georgia Peanut Commission and member of the Southern Peanut Farmers Federation. “It creates stability giving farmers the ability to secure loans, contract with shellers, buy from chemical and feed companies, and invest in farm capital equipment.” The peanut program has given farmers like Michael Davis, a sixth-generation farmer from Graceville, Florida, the reassurance they need to continue farming. “The peanut program serves as an important backstop allowing us to plan for the long term. Without the peanut program, I believe that one-third of the farmers I know would go out of business, which would dramatically impact our communities.” Through the website, SPFF aims to educate policymakers, farmers and the agriculture community about why the peanut program must be retained in the upcoming farm bill. The peanut program


is a sound, market-based solution that offers farmers a necessary price floor to support continued stability and access to lending, regardless of what is happening in the larger market. The program also helps to meet the ever-increasing demand for peanuts both domestically and internationally. Peanuts have seen continued per capita consumption growth for years, jumping from 6.60 pounds per capita to 7.41 between 2012 and 2016.* Caleb Bristow, executive director of the Alabama Peanut Producers Association, says, “In the supply chain for peanuts, what’s good for farmers is good for consumers. Changing the peanut program would have detrimental consequences for not only family-run farms like mine and rural communities across the Southeast, but it would threaten the availability of a healthy and nutritious energy source for billions of peanut lovers around the world.” Peanut Program Works’ main message directly combats the attempts by the Florida Peanut Federation to drastically lower reference prices and destabilize a program that works for peanut farmers, their families and their surrounding communities. Don Koehler, executive director of the Georgia Peanut Commission and a member of the Southern Peanut Farmers Federation, said that the policy advocated by the FPF would benefit only a small

Opinion Editoral continued from page 4 exceeding supply. As long as the markets are good, the government provides very little support making costs to the government minimal. But when the price drops, and the peanut program kicks in, farmers are able to stay in business and communities are able to weather the economic downturn. That’s good for the economy of the entire region, and the reason why a fair reference price must be maintained in the 2018 Farm Bill. I’m proud to be a peanut farmer, and I’m proud of how the peanut program works to stabilize our farms and support our communities. Any attempt to change the peanut program should be seen for what it truly is: a short-sighted attempt to benefit a few at the expense of all peanut farmers. t


Southeastern Peanut Farmer July/August 2017

number of their members at the expense of peanut farmers throughout the Southeast. “The fact is the Florida Peanut Federation would undermine the marketbased peanut program that works for peanut farmers, our families and our communities by pushing to dramatically lower the reference price and championing a self-serving effort on behalf of a few farmers who want to arbitrarily declare peanut base – a move that would put farmers in our community out of business and wreak chaos in the marketplace,” Koehler says. “Peanuts aren’t publicly traded on the futures market so the price of peanuts isn’t set until well after the peanuts are planted, and we’ve sunk big money into our crop. In order to meet the growing global demand for peanuts, farmers need a system in place that provides stability over time. And fortunately, we have one,” says Mike Jordan, a Jackson County, Florida farmer. The website, which was launched while the peanut industry was meeting at the 21st Annual USA Peanut Congress, urges and equips users to take initial steps towards understanding the peanut program and its sustained benefits, as well as the unreasoned claims made against it. Protect the Peanut Program that helps protect us—visit to learn more. t * Source: USDA Peanut Stocks and Processing report; excludes peanut oil

Checkoff Report Investments Made by Growers for the Future of the Peanut Industry.

FPPA promotes peanuts at 32nd Annual Chefs’ Sampler The Pittman family, Jeff, Ginger, Mary Katherine, and Wilton represented the Florida Peanut Producers Association at Tallahassee’s oldest and largest foodie event, the 32nd Annual Chefs’ Sampler, benefitting the Children’s Home Society of Florida. The charity event was held at The Centre of Tallahassee where 53 restaurants provided samples of delightful food. While visiting the restaurants, guests also enjoyed live music and visiting with great company. This was a great opportunity for the Florida Peanut Producers to inform the over 2,000 attendees on the importance of the economic impact the peanut industry has

on the state and to raise awareness of the nutritional value of peanuts, all while giving back to the community. Guests that stopped by the peanut producers table enjoyed peanut butter cookies that were provided by the Marianna High School Culinary Department and complimentary bags of roasted peanuts. The Children’s Home Society is a vital resource in the Big Bend area that provides an array of life-changing resources and programs to neglected, abandoned, and abused children. Mary Katherine served as a philanthropy intern for the event. For more information on this event or how to get involved with the

FPPA promotes peanuts during tourism week During Florida’s Tourism Week, the Florida Peanut Producers Association (FPPA) promoted peanuts in some of Florida’s Welcome Centers in West Florida, the Central Panhandle, North Florida and Central Florida. FPPA provided complimentary peanuts and information about Florida’s peanut production for travelers as they stopped at the various Welcome Centers. “Florida orange juice is always available in Florida’s welcome centers and we think visitors to Florida should be able to enjoy peanuts at the Welcome Centers too,” says Ken Barton executive director of the Florida Peanut Producers Association.

Sherry Saunders, Florida Peanut Producers Association shares peanuts, recipe cards and other information with visitors stopping by one of the Florida Welcome Centers during Tourism Week.


The Pittman family promotes peanuts at the 32nd Annual Chefs’ Sampler in Tallahassee.

Children’s Home Society, please visit

APPA sponsors food allergy presentation at the Albama Chapter pediatrics conference The Alabama Peanut Producers Association sponsored a food allergy presentation at the Alabama Chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics Conference in Destin, Florida, on May 6, 2017. Joe LaRussa, MD, a pediatric food allergist in Birmingham, Alabama, updated about 50 pediatricians on food allergy during a luncheon meeting. His focus was on proper diagnosis of food allergy, the importance of the new guidelines to introduce peanut as early as 4-6 months to help prevent peanut Joe LaRussa, MD, (left) a pediatric allergy and recommendations on when food allergist, recently spoke to the Alabama Chapter of the American to refer a patient to a pediatric food Academy of Pediatrics Conference. allergist. The event was sponsored by the Alabama Peanut Producers Assn. “While most people are aware and Teresa Mays, APPA information that there are new guidelines about specialist, attended the event. introducing peanuts earlier, it seems that pediatricians are very conservative by nature,” says Caleb Bristow, executive director of Alabama Peanut Producers Association. “If we want them to fully implement early introduction in their practices we need to make sure they are hearing from an expert so they will fully understand the new recommendations and all the research which led to those recommendations.”

Southeastern Peanut Farmer July/August 2017

Reports from the: Alabama Peanut Producers Association Florida Peanut Producers Association Georgia Peanut Commission Mississippi Peanut Growers Association

Georgia Peanut Commission introduces ‘Through the Eyes of a Farmer’ video series The Georgia Peanut Commission has introduced a new series of videos, ‘Through the Eyes of a Farmer.’ The video series plans to educate consumers about life on the farm, agricultural production and more. Consumers are drawn to the videos that capture the essence of a farmer’s day-to-day life on the farm and Christopher Martin, a fifth-generation the issues they face with weather and struggles farmer from Hawkinsville, Ga., was interviewed for the ‘Through the Eyes of a of farming. The video series plans to interview Farmer’ video series produced by the at least one peanut farmer in each of Georgia’s Georgia Peanut Commission. peanut producing counties throughout 2017. The videos have continued to gain popularity since the first unveiling in April to thousands of views and shares on social media. Recently RFD-TV inquired about the use of the videos on their Market Day Report and Rural Evening News programs. So stay tuned and continue to look for more ‘Through the Eyes of a Farmer’ video series on the Georgia Peanut Commission YouTube page, website or Facebook page.

Georgia Peanut Commission sponsors Georgia FFA

Joy Crosby, director of communications with the Georgia Peanut Commission, congratulates the Star in Agriscience winners for Georgia FFA. Pictured left to right, Crosby, Courtney Cameron, State winner from Lowndes County; Xavier LaTore, Central Region winner from Eagle’s Landing; and Doster Harper, North Region winner from Newton College and Career Academy.

The Georgia Peanut Commission and the Peanut Institute teamed up to sponsor the Georgia FFA Star in Agriscience Award during the state convention held in Macon, Georgia. The State Star in Agriscience Award was presented to Courtney Cameron of Lowndes County. The additional state finalists included Xavier LaTore of Eagle’s Landing in the Central Region and Doster Harper of Newton College and Career Academy in the North Region. The Georgia Peanut Commission also exhibited during the career show and sponsored the Georgia FFA Alumni photo booth during the career show. Each member received a 4x6 print with the Georgia Peanuts logo displayed on the photo.

APPA promotes peanuts at Sun Belt Conference Softball Championship

Mississippi Peanut Growers presents at civic club meeting in Clarksdale The Mississippi Peanut Growers Association (MPGA) has moved into the civic club arena with a presentation by Malcolm Broome, executive director, at a Rotary Club meeting. Scott Flowers, MPGA Board members secured the spot in the Rotary Club in Clarksdale, Mississippi, which is right in the middle of the Mississippi Delta and home to a Golden Peanut and Tree Nuts Buying Point. The presentation to some 30 business leaders in the Clarksdale community covered the economic value of peanuts to that area of the Delta in addition to explaining how the “Peanuts in Mississippi” program has grown since the MPGA was organized in 2006 and now has a state-wide presence. Broome also explained how the industry functioned across the nation and covered all the different groups and their role in the industry. A number of questions were asked by the club members about health benefits which led to an explanation on peanut allergies, as well as, plans to build more infrastructure in Mississippi and could the peanut industry growth continue in the Delta? Each member was given a sample pack of peanuts, National Peanut Board squeeze peanut and literature on peanuts and diabetes, heart health, and power of plant based protein.

The Alabama Peanut Producers Association recently served as a sponsor for the 2017 Sun Belt Conference Softball Championship. The four-day event was held at Troy University in Troy, Alabama, and welcomed thousands of fans to the area. The sponsorship included commercials, program advertisements, special drawings for peanut prizes as well as a fifth inning stretch where fans were able to catch packets of Alabama peanuts to enjoy during the games. Softball fans enjoy Alabama peanuts during the Sun Belt Conference Softball Championship games held at Troy University, Troy, Ala.

July/August 2017 Southeastern Peanut Farmer


Florida Peanut Advisory Council makes historic vote for checkoff funds n a historical move, new recommendations in Florida divides peanut farmers checkoff dollars between two organizations representing peanut farmers and the University of Florida. The recommendation came after a vote of the Florida Peanut Advisory Council June 8, 2017, in Tallahassee, Florida. The motion passed by a vote of 5 to 1 in favor of distributing $238,000 to the Florida Peanut Producers Association (FPPA), $112,500 to Florida Peanut Federation and $199,500 to the University of Florida. According to Carrie Porterfield, marketing specialist with the Florida Department of Agriculture, this funding is from the fees collected from the 2016 crop. “Pursuant to the Marketing Order, a three-dollar assessment per ton of peanuts, is collected by the handler at the first point of sale and remitted to the Department to be deposited into the General Inspection Trust Fund,” Porterfield says. “The Marketing Order funds are used for the administration of the Marketing Order for the following


Florida Peanut Producers Association Board of Directors Andy Robinson President, Williston Michael Davis Vice President, Graceville David DeFelix Sec/Treasurer, Campbellton Michael Nowling, Jay Jerry Mills, Jr., Morriston Bud Baggett, Marianna Chuck Hatch, Branford Joe Tillman, Altha James Marshall, Baker


year.” This is the first time in the history of the marketing order that the checkoff funds have been split between two organizations representing peanut farmers. Traditionally, the checkoff dollars have been distributed to FPPA and the University of Florida. According to the Florida Department of Agriculture website, the Peanut Marketing Order for the Florida Peanut Producers Association was established in 1975 for the purpose of research, promotion and education. It assists the peanut farmers in Florida in their efforts to farm peanuts profitably. FPPA has traditionally received the majority of the checkoff funds and has been the only organization representing peanut farmers in the state through promotional and educational efforts. “The reduction of approximately $112,500 in our budget will have an impact on the programs we can offer and the promotional events we can do in the future,” says Ken Barton, FPPA executive director. “We plan to restructure some of our promotions so we can continue to represent the best interest of peanut

farmers in Florida.” The Florida Peanut Advisory Council members include: Damon Sandlin, chairman; Jeff Pittman, vice chairman; Kelly Jay Philman, Virginia Sanchez, Andy Robinson, William Carte and Jerry Davis. Each of the members are appointed by Florida Ag Commissioner Adam Putnam and must be legitimate and active agricultural representatives who have a vested interest in the marketing order. The advisory council basically advises the Florida Department of Agriculture on industry needs and priorities, recommends rules or regulations, assists with contracts for research. Additionally, the council advises how money should be collected and spent. The council meets yearly to determine the allocation of funds. During the meeting FPPA, FPF and the University of Florida presented information on their activities, research reports and requests and overall plans for the future in terms of promotional efforts, communication and educational efforts. The Southeastern Peanut Farmer received a copy of the proposals from the Florida Department of Agriculture. Upon reviewing the documents, many of the promotions were similar Florida Peanut Federation including exhibits at fairs and Board of Directors festivals throughout the state of Dwight Stansel, President Florida and donation of peanut Member At-Large butter to food banks within the state. Educational efforts Kevin Barrington, Vice President focused on health fairs and Region 5: Lafayette County family type expos where the Donell Gwinn, Secretary-Treasurer peanut nutrition message can be Region 7: Suwannee, Madison, Jefferson Counties shared to consumers. Mike Adams The FPPA’s report also Region 1: Hamilton and Columbia Counties includes a report on their Trevor Bass partnership projects with other Region 8: Alachua and Marion Counties organizations within the peanut industry such as the Peanut Kelly Philman Leadership Academy, Southern Region 3: Gilchrist County Peanut Farmers Federation, Herman Sanchez, Jr. Southern Peanut Growers Region 6: Dixie Conference, regional and Murray Tillis national promotions with the Region 2: Levy County Southern Peanut Growers, partnership with the Alabama Clif Townsend Peanut Producers Association Region 4: Suwannee, Madison, Jefferson Counties

Southeastern Peanut Farmer July/August 2017

Georgia Peanut Commission hosting 2018 calendar photo contest he Georgia Peanut Commission is hosting a photo contest June 7-Oct. 1, 2017, to fill the pages of the 2018 Georgia Peanut Calendar, “Photos from the Field.” Photos will also be selected to be used in various promotional projects by GPC throughout the year. Peanut farmers from across Georgia are encouraged to submit their best high resolution photo of peanut production on their farm. Winning entries will be selected for each month of the calendar, as well as the cover page. Below are tips to consider when selecting a photo to enter: n Make sure the photo is not offensive and avoid photos with large, easy to read corporate logos. n Think about the months of the year and select photos that represent them. For example, land prep work in the winter, planting in the spring, irrigation in the summer and harvest in the fall.


n Make sure photos are taken in horizontal format. If they are vertical, most likely they will not fill the entire page of the calendar. n Select a photo that showcases your family or what being a Georgia peanut farmer means to you. n Choose a photo you feel helps others understand more about how you care for the crop they love. Photo entries must be taken during the 2016 or 2017 peanut growing season and feature peanut production. Entries must also be high resolution (300 dpi), horizontal and not taken with a phone. If photos do not meet these requirements, they may be disqualified. Please submit photos in .jpg format and email them with an entry form to by Oct. 1, 2017, for consideration. Visit for complete details and to download entry form. t BY JESSIE BLAND

Florida Peanut Advisory Council continued from page 10

for the Alabama-Florida Peanut Trade Show and membership with the American Peanut Council. The FPF is a newly formed organization in Florida, launched in February 2017 and based out of Lake City, Florida. The FPF has approximately 170 members. Currently, FPF is a dues-paying membership based organization but they hope to be able to utilize some of the checkoff funds in the future. According to the organization’s executive director, Deborah Tannenbaum, “Through education, promotion and marketing of Florida peanuts, our mission is to improve and develop a thriving and sustainable peanut industry – ensuring all of Florida’s peanut producers and allied partners the greatest opportunity to be successful.” According to Porterfield, Ag Commissioner Putnam will review the recommendation from the committee and approve the final budget for each organization. t BY JOY CROSBY July/August 2017 Southeastern Peanut Farmer



HARVEST GUIDEBOOK Value of peanut vines

How do you put a dollar value on peanut vines? Not easily. For one thing, the nutrient content can be variable depending on the soil fertility where the peanuts were grown and how many stems versus leaves make it into the baled hay. Then the weights of each of the large bales can vary quite a bit, from 800 to 1,200 pounds per bale. Through work with county agents in Georgia back in 2008, it was determined that unless peanut growth is stunted due to drought, then about 6,000 pounds of vines are produced. Only about half of what is produced will actually make it into the bales. So approximately 3,000 pounds of vines per acre are removed



from the field. On this per acre basis, approximately 50-10-60 pounds of N-P2O5-K2O are in the vines. Based on current 2017 fertilizer prices, and if all of the nutrients are available for another crop to take up, this would be a fertilizer value of 27.50-4.2023.40 for a total of $55.10. This probably sounds high and it probably is due to not all nutrients, especially the nitrogen will be immediately available for crop uptake if used as a fertilizer. Then the big question is, if the vines are removed from the field, how do you put a dollar value on the carbon or potential soil organic matter you are removing from the field? As you

Southeastern Peanut Farmer July/August 2017

probably know, Coastal Plain soils of the Southeast are “organic matter challenged” only containing about 0.5 percent organic matter in most cases. Currently there is a lot of interest in “sustainability” and soil “health” which both basically go back to how much carbon you can keep in the field. This is where it is really hard to put a dollar value on peanut vines. Peanut vines may be of more value left in the field to build soil organic matter and hold water and nutrients compared to being baled and removed. t BY GLEN HARRIS SOILS AGRONOMIST UNIVERSITY OF GEORGIA

Harvest Guidebook

Harvest Equipment Checklist Peanut Digger Pre-harvest Checklist u Check the entire machine for loose or worn parts. u Make sure the plow shanks are not bent and the digger blades run level. u Straighten any bent rattler bars. u Check all bearings and the gear box oil level. u Check coulters and vine cutters for proper location and condition. u Align the inversion rods before digging (see operator manual for proper spacing). u Check for binding or unusual noises by operating the machine briefly. u Have plenty of extra digger blades on hand.

Harvest Season Checklist u Check digger blades for proper sharpness and depth. u Coulters should cut vines leaving no clumps. u Check the flow of material through the digger. Make sure ground speed is synchronized to produce a smooth flow of vines and soil into the digger. u Make sure drive belts are tight. u Check for proper vine inversion and inversion rod spacing.

Combine maintenance checklist Pre-harvest Checklist u Clean inside and out, removing all dirt and residue from the previous crop. u Check for loose, bent, broken, or missing parts such as pickup springs, cylinder springs and stripper springs. u Check air lift ducts for holes, lodged objects and dirt buildup. u Make sure all shields are functional and in good shape. u Replace the “Slow Moving Vehicle” sign if it is not in good condition.

Harvest Season Checklist u Adjust settings according to windrow conditions. Remember, no combination of settings will remain optimal throughout a given day. u Check combined peanuts periodically for LSK’s and foreign material. u Check chaff passing through the combine for excessive pod loss. If problems occur, adjust stripper spring settings.

Peanut Hull Color Groups and Distinctive Characteristics

Stay Safe this Harvest Season

Pod maturity profile board is used to determine if peanuts are ready for harvest. This is based on color changes in the middle layer of the peanut hull as the nut matures.

Follow these simple reminders to have a safe harvest season. 1. Turn off power before adjusting, servicing or unclogging power-driven machinery. 2. Make sure loads being towed are properly hitched to the drawbar and that pins and chains are in place. 3. Display slow-moving vehicle signs on machinery towed or driven on the highways. 4. Have shields and guards in place and maintained at all times. 5. Inspect and maintain all hydraulic hoses and couplings. 6. Make sure tires are properly inflated. 7. Inspect and maintain all machinery, equipment and tools to keep them in proper working condition. 8. Have first-aid kits available and develop an emergency plan.


Southeastern Peanut Farmer July/August 2017

Major color


Development period (days)


Soft, watery, poorly defined kernel, between the size of a match head and a full size pod



Spongy texture, pod is full size, kernel is somewhat defined


Dark Yellow

Coarser pod texture then yellow, well-defined kernel



Pink seed coat developing



Rough pod texture, dark pink seed coat



Completely developed kernel, extremely rough pod texture


Harvest Guidebook

Improving the hull-scrape procedure uly, halfway through the season and everyone is hoping for good weather to finish out the season. Over the past couple of years researchers have been working on adapting the hull-scrape procedure to better fit the recently released varieties in the Southeast. This research has been funded by growers through the Georgia Peanut Commission and the National Peanut Board. The hull-scrape method helps maximize yields by looking at the expected weight gain from pods still maturing and the expected weight loss from mature pods lost to soil. The state of leaf and limb diseases in the field is a major issue that, if well controlled, will not only improve yields – it will give you a few days more buffer before the pods really start to come off. The dig decision also involves past and expected weather, labor, equipment, and everything else. In 2016 trials, many of the varieties tested produced higher yields over a longer period than in 2015 research trials. These results were due, in part, to improved genetics, environmental conditions and a stronger fungicide program. In 2016, the current hull-scrape board predicted the estimated digging date for Georgia-06G and TUFRunner 287 accurately. For Tifguard, Georgia-14N and TUFRunner 727, research concluded that adding another seven days to the prediction resulted in higher yields if diseases were under control. Similarly, the best harvest date for TifNV-High O/L, Georgia-09B and Georgia-12Y was 10 days later than projected by the board. Since the hull of Georgia-13M never seems to develop a dark black coloration research has concluded it best to hullscrape that variety from 114 to 121 days after planting and then dig on that prediction. Of course, the research is not conclusive and may not produce the same results in 2017. The predictions are made based on the assumption that the crop and its canopy is in excellent condition and disease control, soil moisture, the weather, equipment and labor also look good. County Extension agents across the


Researchers at the University of Georgia are determining the optimum maturity of newer varieties through the hull-scrape method.

Southeast manage to help growers figure the best harvest dates. Most have done thousands of hull-scrape samples and are very aware of the impact of disease, impending weather and likely a few things not mentioned in this article.

Farmers across the Southeast would be wise to visit them this fall. t BY CRAIG KVIEN PROFESSOR OF CROP SCIENCE UNIVERSITY OF GEORGIA

July/August 2017 Southeastern Peanut Farmer


Industry awards at USA Peanut Congress crowd of attendees convened for the USA Peanut Congress held at the Ritz Carlton, Amelia Island, Florida, June 24-27, 2017. The meeting brings all segments of the industry together to receive the latest updates on new products, industry issues, crop updates and more during the conference. During the conference two awards were presented to recognize the efforts of those individuals in the peanut industry. The American Peanut Council presented the Lifetime Achievement Award to Evans Plowden of Albany, Georgia. He has practiced law for 46 years. Over the last 30 plus years of his legal career, he has been legal counsel for the American Peanut Shellers Association and represents numerous companies in peanut processing and other segments in the industry. As part of his agricultural practice, Plowden played an integral role in the Congressional development of the last four Farm Bills. He has also devoted significant time to regulatory matters before the USDA, the FDA, and the International Trade Commission. Plowden currently serves as a member of the Agricultural Trade Advisory Committee on Cotton, Tobacco, Peanuts & Planting Seeds. In this role Plowden advises the Secretary and USTR on the negotiation of trade agreements with other countries, both bilateral and multilateral. Plowden, a native of Quitman, Georgia, is a graduate of Georgia Tech and Emory University School of Law and served as an officer in the United States Navy. He has served as president of the Georgia Bar Association and is a long time member of its Board of Governors. Plowden has served on my boards, committees and commissions, far too numerous to name here. It is for Plowden’s long service to and involvement in the peanut industry that we are honoring him today. He has long been a well respected voice of reason and counsel that the industry has relied upon for many years. While he worked for the sheller segment, all segments have benefited from his in depth knowledge of legislation and regulations that impact all of us.



The American Peanut Council and Bayer CropScience presented the Research and Education Award to Tim Brenneman, plant pathologist at the University of Georgia. Brenneman has positively impacted the peanut industry for more than 30 years, and is certainly deserving of this recognition. As a professor of plant pathology at the University of Georgia, Brenneman has served the The American Peanut Council presented the Lifetime Achievement peanut industry in many ways. Award to Evans Plowden, legal counsel for the American Peanut Over his career he has Shellers Association. Evans is pictured with his wife, Jerry. conducted numerous research programs contributing to improved control of soil borne diseases including white mold and cylindrocladium black rot (CBR). He has also researched control methods for nematodes, including the evaluation of resistant cultivars. Brenneman also developed the Regional Peanut Germplasm Disease Program funded by the Alan Ayers, director of stakeholder relations/stewardship with Bayer National Peanut Board to Crop Science, presents the Research and Education Award to Tim assist breeders in evaluating Brenneman, University of Georgia plant pathologist. the disease resistance of new germplasms that contribute to his time to serving in numerous new peanut cultivars. As a collaborator on supporting roles for peanut research. He disease resistance, he has co-released four has served two terms as associate editor peanut cultivars in collaboration with for Peanut Science. He has served as breeders Corley Holbrook and Bill president and technical program chair of Branch. APRES and he is a co-PI of the Peanut He introduced nighttime fungicide and Mycotoxin Innovation Labs project in spraying to Georgia peanut growers, Haiti. In association with that project, he giving improved control and yield. has also become a member of the Significant components of the UGA advisory board for the humanitarian Fungal Disease Risk Index were organization Meds and Foods for Kids. developed by Brenneman. Perhaps a professor’s greatest impact As a cooperator on a large peanut is shown in the quality of his graduate genome initiative phenotyping project, he students. Brenneman has excelled in this has helped connect newly discovered area as well, having former graduate segments of genetic code to what those students win numerous awards and codes actually mean in the field. become employed by institutions and Brenneman has published over 140 corporations such as USDA, Monsanto, scholarly articles and many other Texas A&M, Virginia Tech, Birdsong publications. Peanut and Bayer Corporation. t In addition to his own research BY JOY CROSBY contributions, Brenneman has contributed

Southeastern Peanut Farmer July/August 2017

2017 Georgia Peanut Tour set for September he thirty-first annual Georgia Peanut Tour will be held September 19-21, 2017, in Albany, Georgia, and the surrounding area. The tour brings the latest information on peanuts while giving a first-hand view of industry infrastructure from production and handling to processing and utilization. Tour stops will be made in several peanut producing counties including Dougherty, Sumter and Lee County. Attendees can expect to see first-hand nearly every aspect of peanut production in the state. This year’s tour hosts many exciting stops including on-farm harvest demonstrations and clinics, peanut processing facilities, and several special highlights which include research at the University of Georgia Southwest Georgia Research and Education Center, Jimmy Carter's Boyhood Home, Georgia Seed Development Commission Foundation Seed Facility in Plains, Smithville Peanut Company Buying Point and JLA USA in Albany. The tour kicks off this year with the Hot Topics Seminar on Sept. 19 at 3 p.m. at Merry Acres, Albany, Georgia. The seminar topics include an update on the 2017 Georgia peanut crop and a special


During the 2016 Georgia Peanut Tour, attendees were able to see how peanuts are harvested in Ocilla, Georgia at the farm of Armond Morris, chairman of the Georgia Peanut Commission.

focus on food safety. The Georgia Peanut Commission, University of Georgia-Tifton Campus and Griffin Campus, Southwest Research & Education Center, Attapulgus Research & Education Center, and the USDA Agricultural Research Service National Peanut Research Lab coordinate the tour. Hotel accommodations can be made at the Merry Acres Inn in Albany, Georgia

by calling 229-435-7721. Rooms are available at the rate of $89 plus tax for a standard room. Be sure to ask for the Georgia Peanut Tour room block. Visit to register and view tour schedule. For more information, contact Hannah Jones at or call at 229-386-3470. t BY JOY CROSBY

Peanut industry supports proposed revisions to peanut quality standards eanut Growers organizations across the Southeast are in full support of the proposed rule issued on May 25, 2017, in the Federal Register regarding a recommendation from the Peanut Standards Board to revise the minimum quality and handling standards for domestic and imported peanuts marketed in the United States. The Alabama Peanut Producers Association (APPA) and the Georgia Peanut Commission (GPC) issued comments in full support of the proposed rule. This action would relax the allowance for damaged kernels in farmers stock peanuts when determining segregation. The Peanut Standards Board voted in the fall of 2016 to raise the grading score used to classify farmer stock peanuts as SEG 1’s from 2.49 percent to 3.49 percent. This effort would also adjust



Segregation 2 requirements to reflect this change. The APPA and GPC encourages the U.S. Department of Agriculture to allow this change to become effective for the 2017 crop. U.S. Congressman Rick Allen, R-Georgia, also offered his support of the revision. “As a Representative from a major peanut-producing district, I applaud the U.S. Department of Agriculture for their proposed changes to peanut quality standards requirements. These proposed changes align with the recommendations of the Peanut Standards Board and I believe these changes will greatly reduce the burden on peanut growers in my district and across the United States,” Allen says. “I urge all affected parties to comment during this open comment period and encourage the USDA to finalize a rule in time to be applied to the 2017 crop.” The Peanut Standards Board

Southeastern Peanut Farmer July/August 2017

recommended this change to align the incoming standards with recent changes to the outgoing quality standards and to help increase returns to peanut producers. “Segregation 1 peanut standards are an ancient regulation and the technology in the industry is vastly improved,” says Armond Morris, chairman of the Georgia Peanut Commission. “A similar action was granted to the peanut processors last year on outgoing regulations so it only makes sense growers should be afforded the same revision in the rules.” The Peanut Standards Board, authorized under the Farm Security and Rural Investment Act of 2002, consists of 18 members representing the peanut growing regions of the U.S. The recommendation from the Peanut Standards Board will now be taken under consideration by the U.S. Department of Agriculture. t BY JOY CROSBY

Washington Outlook by Robert L. Redding Jr.

U.S. Senate Ag Committee passes pesticide registration act

U.S. Senate Ag Committee reviews farm bill titles

U.S. Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition, and Forestry Chairman Pat Roberts, R-Kansas, and Ranking Member Debbie Stabenow, D-Michigan, held a business meeting where H.R. 1029, the Pesticide Registration Improvement Extension Act of 2017, was favorably reported out of the committee by unanimous voice vote. H.R. 1029 amends the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act: To revise requirements for pesticide registration applications and their corresponding pesticide maintenance fees and pesticide registration service fees. The bill: (1) extends the authority of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to collect the annual fees for registering pesticides; (2) increases the maximum amount of registration fees, including the fees for small businesses; (3) extends a prohibition on the EPA levying other fees for registering pesticides; and (4) revises requirements concerning the use of the Pesticide Registration Fund, including by requiring the EPA to use a portion of the fund to develop guidance for product performance data requirements for certain invertebrate pests of significant public health or economic importance (e.g., bed bugs). The EPA must determine whether to grant experimental use permits for pesticides within specified time frames. The bill adds new categories of pesticide registration applicants who are subject to the registration service fees, such as applications for inert ingredients. The EPA must also identify opportunities for streamlining the review of applications to register a new active ingredient in a pesticide or a new use of a pesticide and for providing prompt feedback to applicants during the review process. “This historically noncontroversial, bipartisan legislation is vitally important to both the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, as well as farmers and farmworkers,” says Roberts and Stabenow. “Not only does this legislation provide certainty to the pesticide industry, but it also provides new products to farmers for crop protection and to consumers to protect public health.” In May, the committee held a hearing in preparation for legislative action to gather input on pesticide registrations. In March, the U.S. House of Representatives passed H.R. 1029 with strong bipartisan support by voice vote on the suspension calendar. A variety of agriculture, non-agriculture, environmental and labor interests support enactment of this legislation.

U.S. Senator Pat Roberts, R-Kansas, chairman of the U.S. Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition, and Forestry, today held a hearing, titled, “Agricultural Research: Perspectives on Past and Future Successes for the 2018 Farm Bill.” This was the fourth Senate hearing in preparation for the upcoming Farm Bill reauthorization. Witnesses included the U.S. Department of Agriculture, Foundation for Food and Agriculture Research, Kansas State University, Georgia Tech Research Institute, Nueta Hidatsa Sahnish College, and Wellman Farms. In his opening remarks, Chairman Roberts commented, “Someone once said, “…[T]oday American agriculture is in the grip of a technological revolution as vast and as rapid as any in history. It is a revolution, which has made the American farmer the most efficient in history. It has made his productivity the marvel and envy of every nation…Experts from all over the world come to see our farms, to study our techniques, and learn our methods. And the farm technology we have developed here in the United States holds out hope to the world for the first time that no man, woman, or child on earth needs to go hungry again.” “These words are as accurate today as they were in the past, when said by then President John F. Kennedy. Times are tough in farm country, and research is indeed the backbone that drives agricultural change, efficiencies, and productivity. “ The Senate Committee has also reviewed issues relative to the Conservation Title of the Farm Bill and will continue this process although it has a full schedule with reviewing the new Administration’s nominees at the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) and related agencies.


Southeastern Peanut Farmer July/August 2017

USDA closes comment period on proposed AMS peanut reg The USDA’s Agricultural Marketing Service has closed the comment period for persons or organizations to express their views on the proposed regulation to increase the level of damage allowed for a Segregation 1 peanut by 1 percent to a level not to exceed 3.49 percent. USDA’s Peanut Standards Board recommended that the increase in damage allowed at its September 2016 meeting. The majority of public comments supported the proposed regulation. The proposal now goes to USDA Sec. Sonny Perdue for a final decision.

Farm Bill Listening Session held in Florida Southern Peanut Farmers Federation supports current peanut program he Southern Peanut Farmers Federation recently praised U.S. House Agriculture Chairman K. Michael Conaway, R-Texas, and the other members of the U.S. Agriculture Committee who held a listening session June 24, 2017, about the 2018 Farm Bill. Chairman Conaway hosted the farm bill listening session, “Conversations in the Field,” at the University of Florida in Gainesville. “No one has better insight into what is and isn’t working in U.S. agricultural policy than our farmers and ranchers. Writing the farm bill is a big task, with a lot of moving parts – and it’s vitally important we get the policy right. The best way to do that is by getting out of D.C. and hearing from the folks this legislation impacts,” Chairman Conaway says. Representatives of the Florida Peanut Producers Association, Georgia Peanut Commission and Alabama Peanut Producers Association made comments before the committee in support of continuing the 2014 Farm Bill peanut provisions. “I’m pleased Chairman Conaway was in Florida today and wanted to hear directly from peanut farmers,” says Armond Morris, chairman of the Georgia Peanut Commission and member of the Southern Peanut Farmers Federation. “The peanut program works. It’s a market-based program that brings stability to peanut farmers, our families and our communities. I was pleased to be able to share with the chairman and members of his committee, including those from the Georgia delegation, Congressmen Scott, Allen and Bishop, how the program helps farmers secure loans that allows us to plan for the long haul.” Ken Barton, executive director of the Florida Peanut Producers Association, said the listening session was an ideal format for members of the Agriculture Committee to be in Florida and understand how the peanut program works to support farmers and communities. “I’m especially grateful to our


Chairman K. Michael Conaway, R-Texas, (center), addresses the crowd as the U.S. House Agriculture Committe Listening Session begins in Gainesville, Fla., June 24, 2017.

Florida delegation, Congressmen Dunn and Yoho for hosting the event. While citrus is bigger than peanuts in Florida, our delegation understands how important the peanut program is to Florida’s economy,” Barton says. “The listening session provided a good opportunity to discuss how a fair reference price brings certainty to farming – both when demand is high, like it is currently, and during times of economic downturn.” The Price Loss Coverage (PLC) program, which was included in the 2014 Farm Bill, works for farmers and consumers. It is a common-sense and market-based solution offering farmers a price floor that promotes constancy and access to lending amidst market uncertainty. Since peanut reference prices are set by the farm bill and applied for a full five years, the system in place ensures stability in times of both prosperity and times of economic downturn. This underscores why a realistic reference price is paramount. The market-based peanut program serves as an important backstop to secure loans. Without the certainty the peanut program brings to peanut farmers, banks would not extend loans – putting many peanut farmers out of business.

“Congress needs to maintain the reference price in the 2018 Farm Bill,” says Larry Ford, a peanut farmer from Greenwood, Florida. “The old adage: ‘if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it’ is true when it comes to the peanut program. When demand for peanuts is high, the program doesn’t cost the government pennies on the dollar, yet the program still delivers on the certainty we need to secure loans. And when the economy takes a downturn, the peanut program can serve as a lifeline to keep us from going bankrupt.” Demand for peanuts is currently on the rise and exceeds supply as interest in the health benefits of peanuts continues to grow. Peanuts have seen continued per capita consumption growth for years, jumping from 6.60 pounds per capita to 7.41 between 2012 and 2016.* This means that market prices are expected to increase and peanut program support to farmers, and cost to the government, will be minimal. The next House Agriculture Committee Listening Session is scheduled for July 31, 2017, in San Angelo, Texas. t BY JOY CROSBY * Source: USDA Peanut Stocks and Processing report; excludes peanut oil

July/August 2017 Southeastern Peanut Farmer


Southern Peanut Growers Chefs visit Mississippi to PLUS UP with Peanut Butter Peanuts, peanut butter and peanut products offer limitless opportunities to PLUS UP the innovation, nutrition and profitability for restaurant menus across the country. In early June, Southern Peanut Growers invited nine chefs and foodservice professionals to Mississippi to explore the peanut industry and commence the PLUS UP foodservice program by developing recipe concepts at the US Foods – Jackson facility and kitchen.

From farm to table The chefs visited B. Jones’ farm in Cruger, Mississippi, to see peanuts growing in the field and the local buying point in Tchula. As one chef put it, “Seeing how peanuts are grown gives us knowledge that helps us be better culinarians when we use them.” Jason Sarver, Mississippi State University peanut agronomist, shows how the peanut plant flowers and begins developing pegs to the chefs and foodservice professionals on a farm tour in Mississippi.

Back row (from L to R): Francis Gonzalez, Blue Plate Restaurant Group; Frank Klein, FK Restaurants; Chad Newton, Asian Box; Malcolm Broome, Mississippi Peanut Growers Association; David Wall, New Seasons Market; Jason Sarver, Mississippi State University; Joe Morgan, Mississippi Peanut Growers Association; B. Jones, farm host and Mississippi Peanut Growers Association; Leslie Wagner, Southern Peanut Growers. Front row: Shelly Bojorquez, Hofman Hospitality Group; Patty Mastracco, culinary consultant; Karena Wong, RDCoder; Robert Danhi, Chef Dahhi & Co. and RDCoder; Bryan Schouten, executive chef – hotels.

Chef creations feature peanuts and Southern influence Many dishes were inspired by the chefs’ experiences in the South, including blackened catfish coated with a mixture of peanut butter powder and spices, Vietnamese-spiced boiled peanuts, and spring rolls influenced by the on-farm fish fry. Southern Peanut Growers will hone the recipe concepts and share PLUS UP opportunities with others in the foodservice industry.

Above: Blackened catfish coated with a peanut butter powder and spice mixture over a salad tossed with maple-candied peanuts. Left: Chef Shelly tops gulf shrimp with a peanut salsa.

Marketing arm of

Take your PB #BeyondTheJar this summer Kicking off in July, Southern Peanut Growers is encouraging people to save the spoon for another time and go #BeyondTheJar to try new peanut butter products and recipes. Whether they are cooling down with a PB smoothie, enjoying a sweet PB treat or grabbing a pre-packaged PB snack before an outdoor adventure, consumers can enter their photos tagged with #BeyondTheJar on social media from July 1 to August 11. To check out sweet new recipes developed by blogger partners, head over to or follow along on Twitter (@PNutButterLover) and Instagram (@peanut.butter.lovers).

Southern Peanut Growers 1025 Sugar Pike Way · Canton, Georgia 30115 (770) 751-6615 · FAX (770) 751-6417 email: Visit our website at

September 19- 21, 2017 Albany, Ga. & Surrounding Area

For more information contact: Georgia Peanut Commission P.O. Box 967, Tifton GA 31793 Phone: 229-386-3470 Fax: 229-386-3501 Email:

Tour Coordinated By: GEORGIA PEANUT COMMISSION UNIVERSITY OF GEORGIA Tifton Campus and Griffin Campus Southwest Research and Education Center Attapulgus Research and Education Center USDA/ARS, NATIONAL PEANUT RESEARCH LAB

July/August 2017 Southeastern Peanut Farmer  
July/August 2017 Southeastern Peanut Farmer