Tuesday, December 20, 2011
Tuesday, December 13, 2011
What would you grow if you didn't grow tobacco? A recent survey conducted by the Center for Tobacco Grower Research (CTGR) asked farmers what enterprise would most likely be the substitute if they had to replace tobacco. Cows and calves ranked number one with burley farmers while grains were said to have the most potential by ﬂue-cured and dark tobacco production.
Extension specialist moves to research: Sandy Stewart, who has served since January of 2010 as an Extension tobacco specialist in N.C., will become the director of the Research Stations division of the N.C. Department of Agriculture on December 19. He will succeed Eddie Pitzer, who retired in September. Despite tight budgets, sources at N.C. State University tell TFN that there is a very good chance that this position will be re-filled, since industry support will be used to fund it. But the next individual who fills it may be a research associate rather than a specialist.
A longtime county Extension agent joins seed company: Scott Shoulars, formerly director of the Rockingham County (N.C.) Extension office, now serves as field agronomist for Cross Creek Seed in Raeford, N.C. He operates out of his home in Reidsville, N.C. To reach him, call 336 601 9512.
Tar Heel tobacco growers: N.C. State will hold another Tobacco Short Course starting January 30, and ending February 3. Thanks to the N.C. Tobacco Trust Fund, the course is free. See your county Extension agent for details.
|Most of the information in this segment is derived from the December issue of Tobacco Farmer Newsletter, edited by Chris Bickers, 903-9 Shellbrook Ct., Raleigh, N.C. To receive the newsletter in your email, call 919 789 4631 or email chrisbickers@ gmail.com.|
Sunday, December 11, 2011
That is the only way to describe it, says Roger Quarles, a grower in
“The price actually seems to be going up at this time. Most years, that is not the case.” Another thing that is not usually the case: Prices at auctions have at times been higher than contract prices. Some of the demand on the auction market has come from farmers trying to buy other farmers’ tobacco to fill out their contracts, says Quarles. Some in fact seem to have a strategy of filling any underproduction from auctions rather than planting so much that overproduction is likely. But there wasn’t any overproduction this season. “We are going to be really short on weight,” says Brian Furnish of the Burley Tobacco Growers Cooperative Association. “We didn’t have any serious weather problems. The weight is just short compared to recent years.” The quality is better than the last two years, he says. Furnish estimates that prices have averaged $1.75 per pound to $1.80 per pound for most of the crop, with the best bringing $1.82 to $1.82 per pound. Georgetown, Ky.
For growers who had flue-cured to sell, this turned out to be a good market, says Rick Smith, leaf dealer from Wilson, N.C. Volume is still unclear, but he thinks about 380 million pounds entered the trade, at an average of perhaps $1.78 to $1.80 per pound. “We would have hoped to average a little more,” he says. “That is not going to be enough to keep some farmers viable. Insurance won’t make them whole either.”
Any shortfall in
flue-cured has been more than made up by the big crop in U.S. , estimated by Universal Leaf at over 1.5 billion pounds. This is the largest Brazilian crop since 2005. It is 200 million pounds higher than initial forecasts. Burley production in Brazil is up 30 percent, Universal says. Brazil
The above material is derived from the Tobacco Farmer Newsletter, scheduled for mailing December 12. If you are not already on the email list to receive the newsletter, send your name, email address, postal address what tobacco type you grow (if any) to email@example.com.