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A communication service of the Southern Peanut Farmers Federation.


Contents May/June 2020

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Joy Carter Crosby Editor joycrosby@gapeanuts.com 229-386-3690

The 22nd annual Southern Peanut Growers Conference is set for July 16-18 at Edgewater Beach Resort, Panama City Beach, Florida. The conference theme is “2020 Vision for Peanuts.” 

Director of Advertising Jessie Bland jessie@gapeanuts.com Contributing Writers Kaye Lynn Hataway klhataway@alpeanuts.com

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Southeastern Peanut Farmer P.O. Box 706, Tifton, Ga. 31793 445 Fulwood Blvd., Tifton, Ga. 31794 ISSN: 0038-3694

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 229-386-3472.

Irrigation Guidebook The 2020 Southeastern Peanut Farmer Irrigation Guidebook features information on irrigation timing, Irrigator Pro mobile app updates and information on installing subsurface drip irrigation in small irregular shaped fields.

Photo credit: J. Cale Cloud, Stripling Irrigation Research Park.

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 229-386-3690.)

Southern Peanut Growers Conference set for July

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AgWET helps improve water usage efficiency An educational based project, AgWET, started in 2017, helps farmers better schedule irrigation, learn about new irrigation tools and increases their water-use efficiency through the use of soil-moisture sensors and smartphone apps.

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: Irrigation in a peanut field. Photo by Casey Cox, farmer from Mitchell County, Georgia.

May/June 2020 Southeastern Peanut Farmer

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Editorial

Calendar of Events

The Tough Get Growing he past few months have been different. I’ve witnessed different opinions expressed online, fear, resilience and more through the coronavirus pandemic. Each person has their right to express their view, but what has really made me smile, are the social media posts where consumers are wanting to buy American made food and products. It is definitely time that American consumers demand American made items and at the same time be willing to pay for it, even if the item costs more. The American farmer has also been proactive and showed consumers that they are still farming and producing good, quality food. That shouldn’t come as a surprise to anyone reading the Southeastern Peanut Farmer. We all know what quality farmers we have across the Southeast growing peanuts and other crops. On television, I noticed one commercial from Miracle-Gro that I thought had a good message. The commercial says, “In troubled times, one thing has always been true. When the going gets tough, the tough get growing. Let’s plant the seed of victory because while we may be apart this is something, we can all do together.” At the same time, farmers and commodity organizations have been using the hashtag #StillFarming on social media posts. It has been refreshing to see farmers post about their family life and the day to day tasks they are doing on the farm. It is also refreshing to see so many consumers actually concerned with where their food comes from and wanting to buy American grown food. Many farmers are struggling with low prices and market fluctuations. However, some have been Alabama peanut farmer creative with how they are selling their fruit and Thomas Adams donates vegetables locally in produce boxes. 1,400 jars of peanut butter to Farmers are also donating peanut butter in Judson Baptist Association their hometowns. Neal Baxley, South Carolina which has ministry centers with food pantries for those farmer, donated 1,500 jars of peanut butter to a in need. local school district where 75 percent of the student population receives free or reduced-price meals. Alabama peanut farmer Thomas Adams donated 1,400 jars of peanut butter to Judson Baptist Association which has ministry centers with food pantries for those in need. Another farmer in the panhandle of Florida, Ryan Jenkins, is #StillFarming and sharing his story of the farm through YouTube and Facebook. It is Ryan’s passion to educate the public about farming in the Southeast. Through the videos he explains each step of the process and what equipment he is using. The videos help to provide consumers not familiar with the farm, a first-hand view of planting, spraying and harvesting crops. Ryan has also done a Facebook Live video where he provided an update from the farm and answered questions from the followers. So, whether you are growing your Victory Garden for the first time or planting 500 acres or more of peanuts, donating peanut butter to food banks or telling your story through social media then you are making a difference. You are still farming, showing compassion, sharing your view from the cab and you are making a difference! t

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Joy Carter Crosby Editor

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Southeastern Peanut Farmer May/June 2020

u American Peanut Research Education Society Virtual Annual Meeting, July 14-15, 2020. For more information visit apresinc.com or call 229-329-2949. u Southern Peanut Growers Conference, July 16-18, 2020, Edgewater Beach Resort, Panama City Beach, Fla. For more details visit southernpeanutfarmers.org. u Sunbelt Ag Expo Field Day, July 23, 2020, Moultrie, Ga. For more information visit sunbeltexpo.com or call 229-985-1968. u American Peanut Shellers Association and National Peanut Buying Points Association Pre-Harvest Meeting, Aug. 12, 2020, The Bindery, Leesburg, Ga. For more information visit peanut-shellers.org or call 229-888-2508. u Georgia Peanut Tour, Sept. 15-17, 2020, Bainbridge, Ga. and surrounding area. For more information visit the tour blog at georgiapeanuttour.com. u Brooklet Peanut Festival, Sept. 19, 2020. For more information visit the festival’s website at brookletpeanutfestival.com. u Plains Peanut Festival, Sept. 26, 2020. For more information visit plainsgeorgia.com. u Central Florida Peanut Festival, Oct. 3, 2020, Williston, Fla. For more information visit willistonfl.com. u Georgia Peanut Festival, Oct. 17, 2020, Sylvester, Ga. For more information visit gapeanutfestival.org. u Sunbelt Ag Expo, Oct. 20-22, 2020, Moultrie, Ga. For more information visit sunbeltexpo.com or call 229-985-1968. u National Peanut Festival, Nov. 6-15, 2020, Dothan, Ala. For more information visit nationalpeanutfestival.com. u Georgia Farm Bureau, Dec. 6-8, 2020, Jekyll Island, Ga. For more information visit gfb.org.

(Let us know about your event. Please send details to the editor at joycrosby@gapeanuts.com.


22nd Annual Southern Peanut Growers Conference July 16-18, 2020 Edgewater Beach & Golf Resort Panama City Beach, Florida ark your calendars for the 22nd Annual Southern Peanut Growers Conference, July 16-18, 2020, at the Edgewater Beach and Golf Resort, Panama City Beach, Florida. This year’s conference offers farmers an opportunity to learn more about legislative issues, peanut promotions and production issues. The registration fee for growers is $145 which includes all conference events and meals. The registration deadline is June 30. The registration fee increases by $50 on July 1. The theme for this year’s conference, “2020 Vision for Peanuts,” plans to highlight the future value of peanuts, the future of grading, processor needs and farm automation in the future. During the Saturday morning general session, the keynote speaker is U.S. Senator John Boozman, R-Arkansas, chairman of the Subcommittee on Commodities, Risk Management and Trade for the Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry. To register and view the conference schedule visit southernpeanutfarmers.org.

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Tentative Schedule of Events Thursday, July 16 3:00 - 6:00 p.m. 6:30 p.m. 7:00 p.m. Friday, July 17 7:00 a.m.

Ice Cream Social and Conference Registration Welcoming Reception Welcoming Dinner Entertainment: Three on a String

Prayer Breakfast Featuring Boyd Deal, My Struggle - His Glory

8:30 a.m.

General Session I - Future Vision of Peanut Value & Grading Karl Zimmer, Premium Peanut T.E. Moye, Georgia Federal State Inspection Service

10:30 a.m. 10:30 a.m.

Spouse Program General Session II - Vision for Farm Automation in the Future Wes Porter, University of Georgia

Noon

Luncheon - Peanuts: Vision to Feed the World Afternoon and Evening on Your Own!

Saturday, July 18 7:00 a.m. 9:00 a.m.

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Breakfast - Farm Press Peanut Efficiency Awards General Session III - U.S. Feeding Programs and Peanuts U.S. Senator John Boozman, R-Arkansas Bob Redding, The Redding Firm

Noon

Lunch on your own and afternoon free!

12:30 - 6 p.m.

Golf Tournament, The Executive Course at Edgewater Beach & Golf Resort

7:00 p.m. 7:30 p.m.

Reception Dinner and Entertainment Featuring The American Flyers

Southeastern Peanut Farmer May/June 2020


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

Peanut industry donates Peanut Proud peanut butter

FPPA exhibits at Florida State Fair

The peanut industry continues to support families and those in need during 2020 through donations of Peanut Proud peanut butter to food banks and civic organizations. As families faced the reality of COVID-19 by having to stay at home, work from home, furloughed or even unemployed; they soon realized the need for additional food or assistance. Food banks also began to feel the pressure with the increased need and requests for food. Since peanut butter is a shelf-stable product that doesn’t require refrigeration, it is a perfect item for food banks. During the spring, Peanut Proud donated 171,400 jars of peanut butter to food banks and other food distribution programs. A variety of donations to Peanut Proud were given from the Alabama Peanut Producers Association, Florida Peanut Producers Association, Georgia Peanut Commission, South Carolina Peanut Board, North Carolina Peanut Growers Association, Virginia Peanut Growers Association and the Texas Peanut Producers Association. On the national level donations were made from the National Peanut Board and the National Peanut Buying Points Association. The Florida Department of Agriculture also donated funds for 48,960 jars of peanut butter for the Salvation Army in Tampa and Feeding South Florida in Pembroke Park, Florida. The Alabama Peanut Producers Association and its farmer members donated 23,040 jars of peanut butter to regional food banks across Alabama. This donation was given to local food banks including the Wiregrass Area Food Bank, Feeding the Gulf Coast, Judson Baptist Association, Elba Community Food Bank, Peanut Butter & Jesus of Sulligent and the Alabama Food Bank Association. APPA partnered Jacob Davis (left), Alabama Peanut Producers with the Alabama Farm Credit, Association executive director, presents a donaAlabama Ag Credit and First South tion of Peanut Proud peanut butter to David Hanks, executive director of the Wiregrass Area Farm Credit for this donation. Food Bank in Dothan, Ala. The Georgia Peanut Commission donation helped deliver 21,600 jars of peanut butter to the Atlanta Community Food Bank in Atlanta, the Foodbank of Northeast Georgia in Athens, Second Harvest of South Georgia in Albany and Valdosta. The Florida Peanut Producers Association donated 14,440 jars to food banks across Florida. At the beginning of 2020, the National Peanut Board unveiled their Spreading Good campaign. Throughout the campaign consumers were encouraged to use the peanut emoji on Twitter which goes toward peanut butter donations to food banks. At the end of the campaign, NPB donated 12,000 jars of peanut butter to food banks.

The Florida Peanut Producers Association attended and exhibited at the 2020 Florida State Fair in Tampa, Feb. 6-17, 2020. The Fresh From Florida breakfast kicked off opening day of the state fair as FPPA served the crowd grilled peanut butter and jelly sandwiches. FPPA also provided recipe cards, health and nutritional information, peanut seed kits, roasted peanuts and general information about peanut production in Florida. The FPPA also had live peanut plants that were blooming and pegging for attendees to see and touch. Other Florida commodity groups provided samples of citrus, strawberries, watermelon, honey, beef, pork and more.

Donations can be made to Peanut Proud online at www.peanutproud.org. 8

Southeastern Peanut Farmer May/June 2020

Ken Barton (left), Florida Peanut Producers Association executive director, discusses peanut production in the state with Tristen Lewis (center), Georgia Miss Agriculture USA, and Samantha Harper (right), Florida Teen Miss Agriculture USA, during the Florida State Fair in Tampa, Fla.

The Florida State Fair celebrates agriculture through the twelve day event that takes place every year in Tampa. Even though attendance was down in 2020 due to weather, the event provides an outlet for FPPA to educate consumers about peanuts. “The Florida State Fair provides a great opportunity for us to showcase new recipes using peanuts and peanut butter,” says Ken Barton, FPPA executive director. “We also share the message of the health and nutritional benefits of consuming peanut products and provide information about peanut production in Florida.”


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

Georgia Peanuts promoted through online streaming, radio and TV During the months of February, March and April, the Georgia Peanut Commission sponsored a :30 second commercial on TV services offered via a “connected” device. This includes TV programs consumers watch via streaming boxes, media streaming devices, smart TVs and gaming consoles over the Internet. The campaign, which highlighted the work of Georgia peanut farmers, as well as peanuts as an affordable, sustainable and nutritious product, generated nearly 200,000 impressions to viewers across Georgia with more than half of the viewership in the Atlanta metro area. The Georgia Peanut Commission also aired the :30 second commercial through the Georgia Association of Broadcasters. In March, the commercial ran 822 times on 37 television stations throughout Georgia. A :30 second commercial also ran on 87 radio stations throughout Georgia totaling 1,830 spots.

Georgia Peanut Commission boosts social media and online educational materials Throughout the spring, the Georgia Peanut Commission boosted their social media efforts while consumers were home bound due to COVID-19. One of the top videos in March highlighted Ag Hero Day during Georgia Ag Week. The video reached more than 4,400 impressions. Additionally, GPC held a Facebook Live video chat with Don Koeher, GPC executive director. During the FB Live video, Koehler answered common questions about peanuts and peanut butter. The live video reached 2,600 impressions. Additionally, GPC promoted educational materials and online games for consumers searching for materials to assist with at-home education. GPC also created new word search, coloring sheets and scavenger hunt activities. The items are available on the GPC website at www.gapeanuts.com.

Alabama Peanut Referendum rescheduled for July 23 The Alabama Peanut Referendum vote has been rescheduled for July 23, 2020. The vote will take place during the established office hours between 8 a.m. and 4 p.m. All persons engaged in the production of peanuts for the years 2017, 2018 or 2019 shall be eligible to vote. A list of the polling locations will be available at www.alpeanuts.com. In the event the referendum is carried by a majority of those voting, the current assessment will continue to be collected upon an order of the Commissioner of Agriculture and Industries to all persons, firms and corporations engaged in the business of purchasing peanuts in this state by deducting from the purchase price of peanuts at the rate of twelve and one-half cents ($.125) per one hundred pounds of peanuts sold. The proceeds from the funds derived from the assessment will be administered by the APPA and used for the purpose of contributing toward the financing of programs in research, education, promotion and other methods designed to increase the consumption of peanuts and peanut products, as well as the general well-being of the peanut producers. For more information, contact Jacob Davis, APPA executive director, at 334-792-6482 or email jdavis@alpeanuts.com.

Georgia Peanut Commission hosts #PeanutPower Twitter Party The Georgia Peanut Commission hosted a #PeanutPower Twitter Party with FoodieChats in March to celebrate National Peanut Month. Five food influencers across the U.S. created peanut recipes for the Twitter Party using products from the GPC Gift Shop. The 30 minute Twitter Party reached more than 1 million impressions. Also, there were 285 menions of the peanut emoji which helped with the National Peanut Board’s Spreading Good campaign. Each peanut emoji used on Twitter represents a donation of peanut butter to food banks. The food influencers developed these new peanut recipes: Vietnamese Shrimp Sandwiches with Georgia Peanut Sauce, Rainbow Veggies Salad with Georgia Peanut Sauce, Caramel Peanut Butter Bars Featuring Georgia Peanut Products, Thai Georgia Peanut Noodles with Vegetables and Seared Beef and Gluten-Free Chinese Chopped Kale Salad with Georgia Peanuts Crusted Chicken Tenders.

FPPA announces scholarship money available The Florida Peanut Producers Association announces the opening of their 2020 Scholarship Award Program. Two $1,200 scholarships will be awarded to deserving high school seniors and/or college students. The applicant or someone in the applicant’s family must be an actively producing peanut grower in Florida. It is the intent of the Scholarship Award Committee, however, that the award recipients attend a Florida junior college or four-year university. For an application contact the FPPA office at 850-526-2590 or visit the FPPA website at www.flpeanuts.com. The scholarship applications must be postmarked no later than July 1, 2020.

May/June 2020 Southeastern Peanut Farmer

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2020

IRRIGATION GUIDEBOOK

Irrigation Timing irrigating too early or too late on peanuts, basically what were the effects for not hitting the optimum irrigation timing,” Porter says. “Since it can be hard to determine what the exact right time to irrigate is, we opted to utilize WaterMark Soil Water Tension (SWT) sensors to pick the thresholds based on the soil type the peanuts were planted in.” For the research project, Porter set the

here are several methods to determine how much to irrigate and when to irrigate peanuts. Wes Porter, University of Georgia irrigation specialist, has been focusing his irrigation research on the timing of the water applications and the impact on final peanut yield. “The main goal of this irrigation project is to determine the penalties for

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Irrigation Scheduling Irrigation Scheduling Method

Irrigation Amount (in)

Total Water (in)

Yield (lb/ac)

2018

2019

2018

2019

2018

2019

Dryland

2.50

2.50

35.16

22.2

5591

5874

WaterMark (20 kPa)

6.25

15.18

38.91

34.9

5847

6572

WaterMark (30 kPa)

5.50

11.41

38.16

31.2

5729

6779

WaterMark (40 kPa)

4.00

6.93

36.66

26.7

5900

6834

WaterMark (50 kPa)

4.75

9.18

37.41

28.9

6047

7076

WaterMark (60 kPa)

4.75

5.41

37.41

25.20

5862

6798

Irrigator Pro (Soil Temp)

6.30

-

41.91

-

5996

-

Checkbook

9.25

-

38.58

-

5650

-

50% Checkbook

5.92

-

36.66

-

5767

-

New Checkbook

-

13.19

-

32.90

-

6561

Old Checkbook

-

15.76

-

35.50

-

6607

4.00

9.91

38.91

29.7

5492

6497

Irrigator Pro (Sensor)

2018 - Planted 5/11/28, Dug: 9/27/18, Harvested: 10/2/18, Rainfall: 32.66 inches 2019 - Planted: 5/11/19, Dug: 9/19/19, Harvested: 9/23/19, Rainfall: 19.74 inches

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Southeastern Peanut Farmer May/June 2020

Wes Porter, University of Georgia irrigation specialist, has been researching the timing of irrigation applications and the impact to peanut yield.

optimal threshold at 40 kPa which is the published rate for the sensors and soil type (Sandy Loam). Then he selected two thresholds below and two above the optimal, 20, 30, 50, and 60 kPa. Each time a sensor reached the trigger point for a treatment, Porter applied 0.75” of irrigation to all plots in the treatment. The research was completed at the University of Georgia’s Stripling Irrigation Research Park in Camilla due to the capabilities of the irrigation control at the park and the high number of treatments for this irrigation study. According to Porter, yield can be lost for being too conservative and over irrigating, as well as under irrigating peanuts. He recommends for farmers to implement some sort of scientific irrigation scheduling method to prevent yield loss. Through the study, Porter was surprised at the penalties for both overand under- irrigating. “We typically know there are penalties for not irrigating on time and usually we are inclined to irrigate more often and over irrigate the crop,” he says. “This study shows that if we irrigate too much, we can reduce yields also.” The results of this study showed that Continued on page 11


Valley Irrigation Launches Valley 365 Connected Crop Management Growers gain greater control through a single sign-on platform to manage crop data. alley® Irrigation, The Leader in Precision Irrigation®, has launched an innovative platform for growers to manage, control and share data analytics between connected devices on the farm. Valley 365™, a cloud-based, single sign-on platform for connected crop management, brings together the best features of existing Valley technology into one easy-to-use interface, providing growers more information and greater control of their pivots. Valley 365 (valleyirrigation.com/365) takes the functionality of precision management and control technology such as AgSense®, Valley Scheduling™, Valley Variable Rate Irrigation (VRI), and Valley Insights™, integrating them into one platform. Growers can use a single sign-on to access all solutions in real time from anywhere at any time. “With Valley 365, growers have the combination of our best technology at

their fingertips,” says Andy Carritt, vice president, product development for Valley Irrigation. “It provides greater efficiency, the knowledge to make smarter business decisions, and it’s built to support future advancements in precision irrigation.” The data in the Valley 365 platform is arranged into intuitive modules including Forecast & Plan, Monitor & Control, Insights & Analysis and Optimize & Apply. These allow growers to identify issues, determine which areas of the operation are affected, and execute necessary changes to optimize yield using fewer resources. “Getting the correct amount of water on crops at the right time is the most important determinant when it comes to crop yield,” says Len Adams, group president of Valley Irrigation. “Valley 365 gives growers the opportunity to leverage environmental and agronomic data to use their equipment more effectively. We are helping growers streamline irrigation

Irrigation Timing Continued from page 10

Irrigator Pro Mobile App Update

in both a wet year and a dry year an increase in yield up to the 50 kPa threshold and then a decline in yield after that point. “This tells me that there is an optimum soil moisture for maximizing peanut yield independent of year and environmental conditions,” Porter says. “This can be achieved via the implementation of a scientific irrigation scheduling strategy that ensures there is adequate soil moisture available to the crop when it requires it.” The lower yield for wetter soils suggests that especially during a wet year, it is critical not to over irrigate the crop but to apply the required amount of irrigation when it is needed. This study combined witih Porter’s other irrigation scheduling studies have shown that irrigation timing is more critical than total amount. t

BY JOY CROSBY

A team of agriculture and conservation partners in Georgia recently unveiled an updated version of the smartphone app and web-based platform for Irrigator Pro. The 2.0 version is available free in the Apple and Google Play Stores, or online at IrrigatorPro.org. Irrigator Pro is an irrigation scheduling tool for peanuts, cotton, and corn that was first developed by the Agricultural Research Service’s National Peanut Research Laboratory in Dawson, Georgia. The simple tool helps farmers determine when to irrigate to ensure optimal crop growth while minimizing irrigation costs. The revamped website for Irrigator Pro includes new tutorials and additional options within the platform. Some of the new features include a section on the website that explains how the app calculates the data and provides additional soil types to choose from when selecting a field. Farmers can learn more about Irrigator Pro online at www.irrigatorpro.org. t May/June 2020 Southeastern Peanut Farmer

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Photo credit: Austn.

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practices.” Scalability is key with this software solution. Growers can easily customize and add features as their needs change. It provides unlimited data storage, offers enhanced support capability and is extremely secure. Valley 365 is certified Ag Data Transparent (ADT), a symbol of trust and security in the agriculture industry that means Valley 365 adheres to a strict set of core principles governing how technology providers collect, use, store and transfer growers’ ag data. “This is an intuitive system designed to make producers’ lives easier,” says Carritt. “It doesn’t replace the technologies our growers know and trust. Instead, it aligns those core applications, so producers can optimize data, benefit from organized analytics and insights, and stay connected to their fields.” For more information, please visit www.valleyirrigation.com. t


Subsurface Drip Irrigation Finds Home with Small Fields

Kris Balkcom, Auburn University peanut agronomist, has been researching the use of subsurface drip irrigation in small and irregular shaped fields in Alabama.

rowers with small and irregular shaped fields may find an option with subsurface drip irrigation in their fields based on research from Auburn University. Kris Balkcom, Extension Peanut Agronomist, from Auburn University, has been researching subsurface drip irrigation in peanuts since 1999 at the Wiregrass Research and Extension Center in Headland, Alabama. He uses this research to give his best recommendations to growers on how to install a subsurface drip irrigation system. The details of his research include drip tape spacing, flow rate and the type of drip tape to use. Drip tape spacing has been one of the main components of Balkcom’s research. “Should we have 3-foot tape spacing or 6-foot tape spacing?” Balkcom says. “Our research has shown us over the years that the 6-foot tape spacing is just as good as the 3-foot tape spacing.” He notes that it may take more time to get the water out because you have less

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drip tape and emitters, but the plus is having half the cost in your drip tape with 6-foot spacing. Another component of subsurface drip irrigation research is the flow rate. Balkcom’s research has looked at a higher flow rate of 0.37 gal per hour compared to a lower flow rate of 0.26 gal per hour. “They are both very comparable. Obviously, the higher flow rate will get the water into the field faster,” Balkcom says. “But in the end the yield is basically the same using either flow rate.” Balkcom recommends going with the lower flow rate because it takes less horsepower to pump the water, although more time is needed to get the water out. This subsurface drip irrigation research has looked at the type of drip tape to use, as well. According to Balkcom, there is regular subsurface drip tape, such as Netafim tape with a typhoon emitter, and Drip Net PC, which is a pressure compensating tape to fit irregular shaped fields with rolling terrain. Growers are able to put out an even flow of water from one end of the drip line to the other.

Southeastern Peanut Farmer May/June 2020

Balkcom encourages growers to consider installing subsurface drip irrigation systems in areas without wide-open fields or plenty of water underneath the ground to serve a center pivot irrigation system. “Here in Alabama we have a lot of small irregular shaped fields,” Balkcom says. “And with the exception of extreme Southeast Alabama, water is a lot deeper in the ground. It’s a lot more costly to get that water to feed those crops through a well.” With a subsurface drip system, growers do not have to have a high flow amount of water gallons per minute. Balkcom says growers can get by with a smaller well and block it off in different zones. Subsurface drip irrigation is beneficial to growers in Alabama because of the following: 1. It fits the fields – small, irregular fields and rolling terrain. 2. Uses less water – can use a smaller well. 3. No 3-phase power needed – most rural areas do not have access. 4. No risk of damage or theft – everything is underground. “One of the big turn-offs to subsurface drip is there’s no companies that go in and install subsurface drip,” Balkcom says. “It is some back-breaking work and hard work, but I think it’s certainly well worth what you get in the end using subsurface drip irrigation.” Balkcom says the engineers at the irrigation companies will design and draw out the system, and it is easy to follow, like putting a puzzle together. Once the subsurface drip irrigation is installed it is a permanent fixture. The subsurface drip irrigation system at the Wiregrass Research and Extension Center has been in the ground since 1999. “When we started back in 1999 there were places in Texas that had tape for 20 years at that time,” Balkcom says. “That’s continued on page 14


Subsurface Drip Irrigation continued from page 12

what made us interested.” The technology has changed over the years, but the tape lasts in the ground because it is not exposed to the sun and does not degrade. Precision agriculture technology has made it where growers can plant their rows in the same place year after year using GPS features on a tractor. “Precision ag technology gives you the capability of being sub-inch accuracy from one year to the next to know exactly where you have something,” Balkcom says. “When we plow in the tape we know where it is, the tractor knows where it is ever year, so we can plant our crops accordingly to that and go in and not damage the tape.” Another plus to subsurface drip irrigation is it does not have to be removed for digging peanuts. The drip tape can be plowed in at 13 to 14 inches deep for the Dothan sandy loam soil type with a clay base, and 10 to 11 inches deep for sandier soils. “With these depths we are plenty deep to be out in the field with any tillage or implements,” Balkcom says. Growers interested in learning more about subsurface drip irrigation can contact Kris Balkcom at the Wiregrass Research and Extension Center at 334-693-2010 or by email at balkckb@auburn.edu. t

Installation of subsurface drip irrigation at a farm in Dale County, Alabama. The subsurface drip irrigation was installed in 2010 and is still being used on the farm today.

BY KAYE LYNN HATAWAY

Alabama Irrigation Initiative Progresses The Alabama Irrigation Initiative has been progressing with construction of pivots and development of water sources occurring on North Alabama farms. According to William E. Puckett, executive director of the Alabama Soil and Water Conservation Committee, fiftynine applications were taken for irrigation development with 33 approved in the first round and another nine approved for the second round. The local Soil and Water Conservation Districts and NRCS Offices are working with farmers to implement this program on-the-ground. Puckett said he expects another round of signups in the

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Middle Tennessee River Basin later this year. The next watershed targeted for the initiative will be the Choctawhatchee-Pea (CPW) in Southeast Alabama. Puckett stated that COVID-19 has slowed progress, but he still expects movement this fall in the CPW. Scientists from Auburn University and the University of Alabama-Huntsville expect to have a draft watershed plan by summer. Pre-applications from farmers were accepted in Fall 2019 with over 120 producers expressing interest. An additional signup period will open this fall to ensure everyone is able to apply. Irrigation practices that will be

Southeastern Peanut Farmer May/June 2020

eligible for cost share include deep wells, small water storage facilities, pivots, pumps, intake structures, generators, and surface and sub-surface drip systems. Irrigation systems are designed by Certified Irrigation Designers and approved by NRCS. On-site environmental and cultural resource reviews will also be conducted by NRCS at each site. The goal of the project is to develop a sustainable on-farm water supply for SMART irrigation on new land. Currently, approximately $28 million dollars has been targeted for the various watersheds. t BY KAYE LYNN HATAWAY


AgWET Photo credit: University of Georgia.

Extension and Education Help Improve Water Usage Efficiency

Calvin Perry, superintendent of the University of Georgia Stripling Irrigation Research Park in Camilla, Georgia, AgWET has increased the adoption of innovative and efficient irrigation practices and technologies like soil moisture sensor systems across south Georgia.

n educational based project, AgWET, started in 2017, and has been a continuous project conserving one of the state’s valuable resources — water. The University of Georgia Extension Service created the Agricultural Water Efficiency Team (AgWET), which includes University of Georgia faculty and Extension agents, crop consultants, farmers and Flint River Soil and Water Conservation District experts. This program helps farmers better schedule irrigation, gives them a better understanding of why they may need to use these tools to help schedule their irrigation and increases their water-use efficiency through the use of soil-moisture sensors and smartphone apps. AgWET has increased the adoption

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of innovative and efficient irrigation practices and technologies like soil moisture sensor systems across South Georgia, said Calvin Perry, superintendent of UGA’s Stripling Irrigation Research Park in Camilla, Georgia. “While the AgWET project cannot claim all the credit, soil moisture sensor vendors operating in Georgia report a substantial uptick in system sales following the start of the AgWET project,” he says. “One vendor had a 536% increase in sales and another saw a 370% increase.” “Ag water conservation and water use efficiency are what we’re all about and why Stripling Park was created,” Perry adds. At Stripling Irrigation Research Park, more than 10 scientists conduct waterrelated research on crops like cotton,

Southeastern Peanut Farmer May/June 2020

corn, peanuts, soybeans, sweet corn and vegetables, including collaborative projects with manufacturers of pivots, sprinklers and sensors. Technology created at UGA has also helped improve water use efficiency in Georgia. With funding from the Georgia Peanut Commission and the Georgia Cotton Commission, UGA researchers developed a low-cost, wireless soil-moisture sensing system. UGA Smart Sensor Array uses a dense network of smart sensor nodes to accurately determine soil moisture variability. “This system provides real-time soil-moisture data at multiple depths using inexpensive sensors and wireless telemetry. Several vendors have modeled their sensor systems on of the UGA system,” Perry says. “This type of information is necessary to make good irrigation scheduling decisions — especially if a variable-rate irrigation system is used.” UGA Extension specialists have also reported a notable increase in the use of mobile apps for soil moisture sensor and scheduling. UGA CAES researcher George Vellidis developed apps for advanced irrigation scheduling for use by farmers, agents and others in the industry. UGA’s SmartIrrigation App can be used in corn, cotton and soybean fields. A version of the app will soon be available for pecan growers. To date, the app has been downloaded nearly 3,000 times. UGA scientists also cooperated on the creation of USDA’s IrrigatorPro app. To help traditional center-pivot irrigation systems work more efficiently, UGA scientists engineered Variable Rate Irrigation (VRI) technology, which allows control of both where and how much irrigation is applied. The AgWet program helps to combine knowledge gained from research and an outlet to share the new information


Photo credit: J. Cale Cloud, Stripling Irrigation Research Park.

with growers through the Extension Service. Another benefit of the program is the partnership with the Flint River Soil and Water Conservation District experts who faciliate conservation-driven technology and implementation. “It’s a great relationship, anytime two organizations with similar goals can team up for the benefit of growers it’s a win-win,” says Brian Hayes, Mitchell County Extension agent. “The Flint River Soil and Water Conservation District is able to bring resources that extension might not have and Extension has the educational outreach ability to make this program a great benefit to the growers.” The AgWet Program has grown since 2017 to include 14 counties, all aimed at helping farmers schedule irrigation, provide a better understanding of the new irrigation technologies and increase a farmer’s water use efficiency through the use of soil moisture sensors and smartphone apps. “We have run the AgWET Program in Terrell County since the summer of 2017 in two cotton fields each summer, and in 2019 we expanded to include two peanut fields as well,” says Seth McAllister, Terrell County Extension agent. According to McAllister, producers only have a set number of variables they can manage, and irrigation is probably the one that can be the most difficult to understand because field conditions vary so much. “Moisture sensors help take the guess work out of when to pull the trigger on timing irrigation, and help producers know exactly when a field needs water regardless of growth stage or soil type,” McAllister says. “This program allows producers to pull up charts from their field on their phone to know exactly when moisture is depleted and allows them to decide without even having to step foot in the field.” In Grady County, Georgia, there are three growers participating in the AgWet project and utilizing soil moisture sensors in their peanut fields. “We use the project as a demonstration piece showing growers what soil moisture sensors can do for you, the information they can provide and how convenient the apps are,” says Ty Torrance, Grady County Extension agent. The participating growers who have used the program really enjoy seeing a

A soil moisture sensor system is installed on a farm in Grady County, Georgia, as part of the AgWET program.

live look at the soil moisture levels in their field, Torrance adds. “Many farmers are able to compare these methods to their previous methods of irrigation scheduling which are primarily visible crop condition and feeling the soil,” Torrance says. “The soil moisture sensors reaffirmed their thoughts in some cases but prevented them from making costly irrigations applications in others.” The AgWET program partnership with Extension allows farmers to see the technologies on farms in their county, become familiar with the new technology, learn how to navigate the tools and interpret the information from these tools. In some cases the local on-farm applications has helped many farmers make the decision to buy additional soil moisture sensors and to improve their water use efficiency. “The AgWET system allows growers to gain first-hand experience with the sensors, they also have resources in UGA specialists and agents to help make

decisions on when to irrigate and what the reading of the sensors mean on their on farm,” says Brian Hayes, Mitchell County Extension agent. “I believe all of my growers would tell you it has been a benefit to them. There have been some learning curve struggles but I believe they all have learned from it.” Hayes admits that the overall use of soil moisture sensors has not been as fast due to low commodity prices and the cost of the sensors, but he says, more and more growers are trying them every year. “The AgWet project has been incredibly valuable for us to understand how farmers are leveraging smart irrigation technology, using farmer feedback from the field to continue to make improvements, and ultimately improving water use efficiency, benefiting farmers’ bottom line,” says Perri Campis, executive director of the Flint River Soil and Water Conservation District. t BY JOY CROSBY

May/June 2020 Southeastern Peanut Farmer

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Toews set to lead UGA Tifton Campus ichael Toews has been named assistant dean of the University of Georgia College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences to oversee the Tifton Campus. Toews, a UGA entomology professor, succeeds Joe West, who recently retired after a 34-year career with the college. The UGA Tifton Campus has 60 faculty and more than 400 staff supporting teaching, research and Extension programs for the college. The campus includes the Coastal Plain Experiment Station, the National Environmentally Sound Production Agriculture Laboratory and the Center for Invasive Species and Ecosystem Health. “I look forward to building on the tremendous balance, breadth and professional reputation that our faculty enjoy,” Toews says. “One of my chief goals as the assistant dean will be to

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secure funding and resources that enable our campus to thrive for the next 100 years.” The Tifton campus, which celebrated its centennial year in 2019, now has 150 buildings and 5,000 acres of farmland to support the land-grant mission of the college. The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Agricultural Research Service is co-located at the campus with approximately 20 scientists working in partnership with UGA scientists. The assistant dean also oversees the Tifton Campus Conference Center, a multiuse facility that brings in conferences and events from across the Southeast. “We are excited about the future direction of the UGA-Tifton campus. Dr. Toews brings a wealth of experience and vision to his new role as Assistant Dean in Tifton,” says CAES Dean and Director Sam Pardue. “I look forward to working with him as he directs the college’s efforts

in South Georgia.” Earlier this year, Dean Pardue announced he will be retiring June 30. A national search is currently underway for the next dean and director of the college. Michael Toews Joe West has University of Georgia been named interim dean and director of the College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences, effective July 1. West’s career with UGA CAES has spanned nearly 35 years. In his 12 years as assistant dean, he oversaw enhancements to the learning environment for students, as well as growth in research activity and Extension programming on the Tifton Campus. t BY J. FAITH PEPPERS UNIVERSITY OF GEORGIA

Culbreath named Fellow of American Phytopathological Society he American Phytopathological Society (APS) recently honored Albert Culbreath as a 2020 Fellow of the APS. The society grants this honor to a current APS member in recognition of distinguished contributions to plant pathology or to APS. Recognition as a Fellow is based on significant contributions in original research, teaching, administration, professional and public service, and/or extension and outreach. Albert K. Culbreath is a professor of plant pathology at the University of Georgia Tifton campus. He is recognized as a leader in the ecology, epidemiology and control of thrips-vectored tomato spotted wilt virus (TSWV), and of early and late leaf-spot diseases of peanut. He is an author on more than 200 journal articles and book chapters, and co-developer of five TSWV-resistant peanut cultivars. Culbreath was a co-developer of the Tomato Spotted Wilt Risk Index and Peanut Rx educational tools that ensured economic viability of peanut production when the disease threatened the industry’s

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existence in the 1990s. He has been an integral part of a multidisciplinary team approach to this complex problem that has produced an integrated spotted-wilt management program combining multiple suppressive factors to control the disease. Adoption of the integrated system coincided with dramatic decline in annual losses to TSWV in peanut. As a part of this work, he documented slower epidemic development in several cultivars and breeding lines than in Florunner, the predominant peanut cultivar grown in the U.S. until the early 1990s. Culbreath has characterized the field reaction to TSWV of numerous breeding lines from multiple peanut breeders. Several of those have been released as cultivars. Much of his work on integrating resistant or tolerant cultivars with suppressive cultural practices is applicable to both organic and conventional production in developing and developed countries. Most recently, Culbreath reported synergistic effects of elemental sulfur with sterol biosynthesis inhibiting (SBI) fungicides for control of late leaf spot in fields where the SBI fungicides alone

Southeastern Peanut Farmer May/June 2020

provided little control. He and UGA colleague Katherine Stevenson co-authored the chapter on fungicide resistance in peanut pathogens in the recent second Albert Culbreath University of Georgia edition of “Fungicide Resistance in North America.” Culbreath has served as president, councilor and division forum representative of the APS Southern Division. He is a Fellow of the American Peanut Research and Education Society, and he was previously recognized with the APS Novartis Award, the UGA D.W. Brooks Award for Excellence in Research and the APS Southern Division Outstanding Plant Pathologist Award. He has also served on 41 graduate student committees and been the major professor for seven master’s degree students and four doctoral candidates. He teaches “Introductory Plant Pathology” at UGA-Tifton. t BY J. FAITH PEPPERS UNIVERSITY OF GEORGIA


Washington Outlook by Robert L. Redding Jr.

House Leadership Introduces Fourth COVID-19 Stimulus Package

Bishop Requests USDA Peanut Butter Purchases

U.S. House of Representatives democratic leadership has introduced the HEROES Act as part of the next round of COVID-19 stimulus assistance. The bill expands upon current farm payment programs and provides for increased nutritional assistance. The legislation includes: n Expanded direct payment provisions for price losses due to the virus n Specialty crop block grants to state departments of agriculture n $50 million to support local farmers n $50 million for beginning farmers and ranchers n Assistance for food processing facilities n $20 million for mental health programs for farmers n Additional broadband funding n Additional $10 billion in SNAP funding n Additional $1.1 billion for Women Infants and Children (WIC) nutrition funding n Includes $150 million for The Emergency Food Assistance Program (TEFAP) n $3 billion for Child Nutrition Programs. A number of farmers have participated in the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) established in the third COVID-19 stimulus legislation or CARES Act. The HEROES Act expands the PPP by extending the covered period from June 30 to December 31, establishes a minimum maturity of 5 years, adds flexibility to the forgiveness program, etc.

U.S. House Appropriations Agricultural Subcommittee Chairman Sanford Bishop, D-Georgia, has requested that the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) consider additional peanut butter purchases as part of its federal feeding program efforts. In a letter to USDA Secretary Sonny Perdue, Chairman Bishop stated, “I encourage you, in the implementation of the Coronavirus Assistance program, to consider purchasing peanut and peanut butter products. Peanut and peanut butter products are shelf stable, affordable, fits well with any dietary regime, making it an excellent product for most pantries.” Although peanut butter is not currently being purchased as part of the Coronavirus Food Assistance Program (CFAP), peanut butter is purchased through other USDA feeding programs being used during the COVID-19 pandemic.

U.S. Trade Representative for Ag Steps Down Assistant U.S. Trade Representative for Agricultural Affairs Sharon Bomer Lauritsen is retiring. Lauritsen has been an advocate for U.S. commodities for many years and has worked hard for the peanut industry on multiple trade agreements. House Agriculture Committee Chairman Collin Peterson, DMinnesota, and Ranking Member Michael Conaway, R-Texas, released the following statements congratulating Sharon Bomer Lauritsen, the Assistant U.S. Trade Representative for Agricultural Affairs and Commodity Policy, on her retirement. “Congratulations to Sharon on her retirement. Her tireless efforts at the USTR have secured better deals for farmers and ranchers, and created opportunities for farm families. I want to thank her for her hard work and all she has done for rural America,” Peterson says. “Sharon has been a driving force behind many trade wins for American agriculture including USMCA, the U.S.-Japan Trade Agreement, and the U.S.- China Phase One Agreement. We are indebted to Sharon for her efforts on behalf of American farmers and ranchers,” Conaway says.

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Southeastern Peanut Farmer May/June 2020

April 22, 2020 Dear Secretary Perdue, Thank you for developing the Coronavirus Assistance program to alleviate impacts to farmers and ranchers and ensuring America’s food supply remain safe and accessible for all. The implementation of the program will be vital in supporting our farming community as well as settling concerns around food supply shortages. USDA has been at the forefront of ensuring Americans have access to healthy foods such as peanut butter by including it as an essential food in all of Food and Nutrition Service nutritional programs. Peanut butter, an American staple, provides essential vitamins and minerals for persons at every stage of life; from pre-natal to adulthood. Peanut butter is a great source of protein that has been used to treat malnourishment globally. Equally as important, regular consumption of peanuts and peanut butter has also been associated with reducing risk of predominant diseases like heart disease and diabetes which are also illnesses prone to COVID-19 death. I encourage you, in the implementation of the Coronavirus Assistance program, to consider purchasing peanut and peanut butter products. Peanut and peanut butter products are shelf stable, affordable, fits well with any dietary regime, making it an excellent product for most pantries. Again, I hope peanuts and peanut butter products receive proper consideration as the Coronavirus Assistance program is implemented. With kind regards, I remain Sincerely, Sanford D. Bishop Jr. Member of Congress


House Ag Members Ask for Additional International Food Assistance U.S. Congressmen Jimmy Panetta, D-California, and Glenn ‘GT’ Thompson, R-Pennsylvania, have written top Administration officials requesting they consider increasing global feeding efforts through our traditional international feeding programs and working with U.S. farmers. In a letter to Secretary Perdue, USAID Administrator John Barsa and Secretary of State Michael Pompeo, the congressmen stated: American farmers have long played a central role in our food aid programs, sharing their harvests to feed the hungry and securing economic and national security gains for the United States along the way. In 2019, USAID’s Office of Food for Peace purchased and shipped more than 1.5 million metric tons of American-grown commodities to dozens of countries around the world. At a time when farmers are facing low farm gate prices and tremendous surpluses, these programs can help both at home and abroad. Members of the House Agriculture Committee continue to encourage increased U.S. commodity purchases for domestic and international feeding programs during the COVID-19 pandemic. May 11, 2020 Dear Secretary Perdue, Secretary Pompeo, and Administrator Barsa: We write to request your continued leadership and partnership to mitigate the global hunger implications of the COVID-19 pandemic. In the face of this public health emergency, funding must be available to international humanitarian organizations working to prevent widespread hunger and steps must be taken to ensure international agricultural trade remains free and open. Our government can make this happen by fully utilizing global food aid programs and leveraging the bounty of American farmers. From the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, food security experts have warned that this health emergency could quickly become a hunger emergency. That, unfortunately, is becoming reality. Over the past month, we have seen our own domestic food supply chain under tremendous stress, with food dumped and wasted while lines grow outside of food banks. Thankfully, our nation’s food system is resilient. Food supply chains will retool, and local, state and federal governments and civil society will step in to protect people in the interim. As the virus spreads to the developing world, however, we are learning of startling food security impacts in places where people are not so fortunate. On April 21, 2020, numerous leaders in the international humanitarian and development community released the Global Report on Food Crises, an annual snapshot of the number of acutely hungry people around the world. The report demonstrates that, even prior to COVID-19, the number of people living in crisis levels of food security or above had increased in 2019 to 135 million people across 55 countries.1 This number is up almost 70 percent in just four years, driven by a rise in conflict and climate-related extreme events. Complementary analysis by the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) shows that an additional 130 million people could be pushed to the brink of starvation by COVID-19 this year if urgent steps are not taken.2 Fortunately, the United States is well poised to respond. For more than half a century, the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) Office of Food for Peace has delivered lifesaving assistance to more than four billion people around the world. We will need our food assistance programs now more than ever before. Time is of the essence, and every effort should be made to swiftly move funding to implementing organizations to prevent the worst COVID-19 impacts. American farmers have long played a central role in our food aid programs, sharing their harvests to feed the hungry and securing economic and national security gains for the United States along the way. In 2019, USAID’s Office of Food for Peace purchased and shipped more than 1.5 million metric tons of American-grown commodities to dozens of countries around the world.3 At a time when farmers are facing low farm gate prices and tremendous surpluses, these programs can help both at home and abroad. As a world leader in agricultural production and trade, we must remain steadfast in our resolve to keep U.S. agricultural markets free and open, especially as dozens of countries around the world consider counterproductive export restrictions and other dangerous measures. In order to avoid a global food price crisis similar to what we saw a decade ago, we must quickly move food to the locations where it is most needed. This type of swift movement relies on fully-functioning agricultural markets. The COVID-19 pandemic threatens global food security in a way that we have not seen since the Second World War, or perhaps ever before. Just as we did then, the United States must rise to the occasion to prevent this hunger emergency from becoming a threat to global stability. As our nation works to meet this goal, we look forward to working with you to make full use of our international food assistance programs and keep communities around the world food secure during this pandemic and in the long-term. Sincerely, Jimmy Panetta Member of Congress

Glenn ‘GT’ Thompson Member of Congress

1 Food Security Information Network & Global Network Against Food Crises,“2020 Global Report on Food Crises: Joint Analysis for Better Decisions,” https://www.fsinplatform.org/sites/default/files/resources/files/GRFC_2020_ONLINE_200420.pdf. 2 United Nations World Food Programme, “COVID-19 Will Double the Number of People Facing Food Crises Unless Swift Action Is Taken,” April 21, 2020, https://www.wfp.org/news/covid-19-will-double-number-peoplefacing-food-crises-unless-swift-actions-taken. 3 United States Agency for International Development (USAID), “Food For Peace Fiscal Year 2019 Fact Sheet,” (Last Updated January 14, 2020), https://www.usaid.gov/ffp-2019-fact-sheet.

May/June 2020 Southeastern Peanut Farmer

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Southern Peanut Growers Julie Andrews Loves Peanut Butter

Peanut Butter Lovers Online

Julie Andrews, best known as the legendary Mary Poppins, was on Good Morning America promoting her new children’s series, “Julie’s Greenroom,” and her podcast, “Julie’s Library.” When asked what her and her family were eating during the shelter-in-place, she replied, “Lots of peanut butter and jelly sandwiches at my house.” At the end of the interview, the host asked Andrews to close with Mary Poppins’ famous line about a spoonful of sugar. Andrews was surprised that was the phrase she wanted and then said, “A spoonful of peanut butter helps the medicine go down in this house!”

When Dorothy said, “There’s no place like home!”, she surely wasn’t envisioning the situation we found ourselves in during March and April. We were asked to shelter-in-place to flatten the curve, making our homes our only place for pretty much everything we do. As the boundaries between work and school and normal home activities shifted – or completely disappeared! – it was easy to become overwhelmed. With that in mind, Southern Peanut Growers put together some things to help feed, entertain and teach during this time! Check out all the Stay-at-Home Resources at the Southern Peanut Growers website at PeanutButterLovers.com/shelter-in-place-resources/. Southern Peanut Growers also changed up the March, National Peanut Month promotions in recognition of this new reality by offering new pantry-friendly recipes and sharingfocused contests on Facebook and Instagram. March Facebook promotions reached more than 21,000 people with more than 1,000 engagements. March Instagram promotions reached more than 10,000 impressions with more than 300 direct interactions.

InstantPot Cooking Makes for Quick Family Meals The InstantPot, an electric combination slow cooker and pressure cooker, is all the rage now for its flexibility and the option of very quick meal cooking – even when starting with frozen chicken! During this busy planting season, try out Southern Peanut Growers’ newest InstantPot recipe!

InstantPot Peanut Chicken Sweet Potato Stew Ingredients: 2 tablespoons cooking oil 1 small onion, chopped 1 medium jalapeno, chopped 2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh gingerroot 1 can unsweetened coconut milk 1 cup chicken broth 3/4 cup creamy peanut butter 2 tablespoons brown sugar 2 tablespoons lime juice

1 tablespoon low sodium soy sauce 1 teaspoon sriracha hot sauce 4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts 1/3 cup chopped fresh cilantro 2 medium sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into 2 inch cubes 1/3 cup chopped roasted peanuts fresh lime wedges cooked white rice

Directions: Using the sauté setting, sauté the onion, jalapeno and gingerroot in the cooking oil until the onions are softened. Turn the InstantPot off. Add the coconut milk, chicken broth, peanut butter, brown sugar, lime juice, soy sauce, and hot sauce into the InstantPot and whisk together with the sautéed onions until thoroughly combined. Add the whole chicken breasts (frozen if desired) and cubed sweet potatoes to the pot. Set the InstantPot valve to Sealing and high pressure. Set the timer to 15 minutes if using frozen chicken breasts or 7 minutes if using thawed chicken breasts. When the cooking time is complete, manually release the pressure. Remove the chicken breasts, cut into cubes, and return the chicken to the InstantPot and stir into the sauce. Serve the stew over cooked white rice, topped with cilantro and peanuts and accompanied by a wedge of lime.

Southern Peanut Growers 1025 Sugar Pike Way · Canton, Georgia 30115

Phone: (770) 751-6615

email: lpwagner@comcast.net

Visit our website at www.peanutbutterlovers.com


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May/June 2020 - Southeastern Peanut Farmer  

May/June 2020 - Southeastern Peanut Farmer  

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