News Roundup: Sept. 17-23

By on September 23, 2016

News Roundup - this week's top news stories about NC agriculture

Each week we round up the latest N.C. agricultural headlines from news outlets across the state and country, as well as excerpts from the stories.

  • “Crop science execs defend mergers; NC Senator cites regulation as driving deals,” WRAL: Top officials for Monsanto and Bayer defended their proposed $66 billion merger before skeptical senators on Tuesday, insisting that the deal would lead to greater investments in technology that could help American farmers. Monsanto, the American seed and weed-killer, and Bayer, the German medicine and farm-chemical maker, responded to concerns from Iowa Sen. Charles Grassley, the Republican chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee. …
  • “How an heirloom watermelon breathed new life into a family farm,” Winston-Salem Journal: A thriving food community requires a lot of support, not just from chefs and consumers, but also from farmers and other food producers. Increasingly, farmers are not only the growers of the raw ingredients, but also the producers of value-added products that are made with the food they grow. Take Nat Bradford, who was at Willow’s Bistro in Winston-Salem on Sunday evening to talk about his family farm in Sumter County, S.C. Chef Travis Myers of Willow’s invited a handful of chefs, farmers and others to Willow’s to meet Bradford and taste the heirloom Bradford watermelon. …
  • “Soybean Producers Grateful for Rain,” Southern Farm Network: (Audio) Many soybean farmers have been hoping for rain, and now they have it. but, it’s time for it to stop, and the sun to come out says Dr. Jim Dunphy, NC State Extension Soybean Specialist: “I think most of the state is seeing the rain as welcome rain, with the exception of the far east coast. Some of these counties had already gotten a bunch of rain this month didn’t need any more, but the vast majority of the state is going to welcome the first inch or two, but then they want sunshine, they don’t want it to stay rainy. We went through that last year, and that didn’t work very well, so we’d like to see the sun come out for a few days.” When we last heard from Dr. Dunphy, about three weeks ago, soybeans were very much in a holding pattern: “Most of them, from Raleigh, east, got some moisture, came back out of it, and went back to making soybeans. West of Raleigh, much of that area stayed dry, and while that’s not the largest soybean producing area, collectively, it’s still a third or a fourth of our state’s soybean production, so it’s still a significant chunk of beans. And they stayed dry, but if they can get some moisture from this tropical storm dallying around, they’ll take it.” …
  • “Are farms the new tennis courts? Olivette opts for agrihood,” Asheville Citizen-Times: Twisted, ridgetop crabapple trees, a turkey feather lodged in the leaves, cascading creeks, meadows of goldenrod and pokeberry, a broad-winged bird dipping low over the French Broad — all these things make it easy to imagine what developer Scott Austin envisions for this property. If he’s able to populate the Olivette community — which he sees as far more than a suburban neighborhood — kids will weave through the crabapples and wade in the creek, and about 300 homes and a private school will look out on the 350 acres of farmland, meadows and woods between Woodfin and Macedonia on the west bank of the French Broad. …
  • “Ceviche’s wins Got to Be NC Competition Dining Series,” Wilmington News-Star: Two of North Carolina’s favorite ingredients — ham and sweet potatoes — were the focus of the Wilmington finale of the Got to Be NC Competition Dining Series held Thursday at Wrightsville Beach’s Bluewater Waterfront Grill. Two teams of chefs offered three dishes each, one using traditional Southern interpretations and another adding twists with international flair. Team Ceviche’s earned a one-and-a-half-point win with a soft egg-and-hash salad and a sweet potato turnover with lavender whipped cream and honey gastrique. …
  • “Daily Ag Summary: Summer in NC Fourth Hottest on Record,” Southern Farm Network: (Audio) Shorter days and the emergence of pumpkin spice everything are sure signals that we’re entering the fall. In fact, meteorological fall began on September 1, but you wouldn’t have known it from the thermometer readings alone. Indeed, North Carolina’s summer was perhaps best defined by the persistence of above-normal temperatures that stretched from June through early September. This summer was a hot one, and the numbers support that statement. The statewide average temperature of 77.69°F ranks as the 4th-warmest summer on record since 1895. But, North Carolina wasn’t alone, most of the continental US, including the entire eastern seaboard had above normal average temperatures this summer. Several cities in the Tar Heel State recorded their hottest summer on record, including Asheville, Tryon and Monroe. …
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