Georgia Peanut Referendum

Cindy Zimmerman

Georgia peanut producers are being asked to vote in a referendum to reaffirm support for the Georgia Peanut Commission (GPC).

The vote is being held March 15 through April 15 under the state law mandates that a referendum be held every three years. Georgia peanut producers invest $2 per ton to fund the commission and its research, education, promotion and communication programs. The last referendum in 2009 passed with an 87.4 percent reaffirmation.

Georgia’s peanut farmers have experienced record prices this past year and the industry has also witnessed record yields and consumption of peanut products the past several years. “I urge all peanut producers to vote in this referendum. Research, education, and promotion continue to be the core focus of the commission,” says Armond Morris, GPC chairman and Irwin County peanut farmer. “With continuing budget cuts at the federal and state level it is extremely important for growers to continue to focus their efforts on supporting research and promotional efforts through their checkoff dollars. One way for farmers to do that is by continuing their support of the Georgia Peanut Commission.”

Among the many promotional efforts that GPC supports is the annual “Peanut Proud” event. Peanut Proud 2012 is set for March 24 in Blakely, Georgia, starting with a 5K & Fun Run, followed by the Peanut Proud Parade, and including lots of entertainment, activities, food and fun.

Peanut Proud will also be hosting an educational symposium on the day before on March 23 in Blakely. That event will feature a variety of government officials and industry representatives who will be talking about the importance of peanuts and peanut butter as a nutritious and sustaining foodstuff for disaster situations, malnourished children, and hunger victims around the globe.