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Farm Bureau urges peanut farmers to vote in referendum

Published 7:20am Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Special to The Post-Searchlight

Georgia peanut producers are urged to return their ballots by April 15 in the referendum currently underway for the Georgia Peanut Commission, Georgia Farm Bureau (GFB) President Zippy Duvall recently announced, according to a press release from the GFB. The referendum, which began March 15 and ends April 15, gives peanut producers the opportunity to determine if they want to continue the 50-year-old commission.

“Georgia Farm Bureau encourages all peanut producers to participate in this referendum and support the commission so it can continue the work it does to promote Georgia’s peanut industry,” Duvall said. “Since its establishment in 1961, the Georgia Peanut Commission has worked hard to improve growing and marketing conditions for Georgia peanut farmers. With state and federal research funds limited due to budget constraints, it’s crucial that the funding of research programs receive grower support.”

State law mandates that a referendum be held every three years to determine if the commission continues. Georgia growers invest $2 per ton of peanuts sold to fund the commission and its research, education, promotion and communication programs.

Peanut producers who did not receive a ballot may get one by calling 1-800-346-4993. The commission asks anyone who received a ballot, but is no longer farming, to write, “no longer producing” on the certification envelope and return it to the commission. This will assist the commission in updating its mailing list. The commission’s address is P.O. Box 967, Tifton, Georgia 31793.

The Certified Public Accounting firm of Allen, Pritchett, and Bassett will count the votes. During the last referendum in 2009, 87.4 percent of Georgia’s peanut growers who voted reaffirmed the commission.

Producers who have any questions about the commission’s activities or the referendum may contact GPC Executive Director Don Koehler by email at don@gapeanuts.com, or by calling toll free at 1-800-346-4993.

Georgia Farm Bureau is the largest general farm organization in the state and is celebrating its 75th anniversary this year. The organization has 158 county offices, and approximately one out of nine Georgians are involved with Farm Bureau. Its volunteer members actively participate in local, district and state activities that promote agriculture awareness to their non-farming neighbors.

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