Monday, August 4, 2008

Being Clear on APRES Comments

My stated disappointment over the APRES conflict with the Southern Peanut Growers Conference was not aimed at the UGA peanut team or UGA. Frankly it was just disappointment in the situation. My Blog generated a lot of discussion. I received a visit to my office and my Chairman was cornered at church on the issue. It was even discussed with me at a Monday night Ice Cream Social at my church.

I am glad the discussion has been generated.

The most valid point that was made came in the visit to my office. It was pointed out that if they had to make a choice APRES was more critical to the UGA peanut team doing their job with the County Agents than attendance at the growers conference. That is exactly my point, this choice should never be one they have to make.

Now you have to understand something about the timing of the Conference. We have a lot of farmers wives who teach school and many of them are now having to be back the third week of July to prepare for classes to start. We are having the conference about as late as we can. The only other choice is earlier which puts us around the 4th of July or even in June and that is a terrible time for farmers to get away from the farm.

I heard a farmer at the Conference say his cost was $400,000 more than last year. He needs every resource to find a solution to that situation or he will be farming up all his equity. Prices haven't kept up with costs.

Ending on a positive note, the new Executive Director of APRES is coming on the Georgia Peanut Tour and wants to sit down and visit with us. I get the feeling he understands the situation and
communication will certainly get us a long way down the road.

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