Peach Industry to Vote on Assessment Renewal in 2021

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Dr. Mike Parker demonstrates pruning peach trees

Dr. Mike Parker, NC State University Tree Fruit Extension Specialist, leads a pruning program

A Message from the NC Peach Growers’ Society

NC Peach Growers,           

The year 2020 marked the expiration of the North Carolina Peach Growers’ annual assessment period. The peach assessment was brought to fruition by the N.C. Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services Marketing Division, the NC Peach Growers’ Society, and N.C. Cooperative Extension in 2014, was voted upon by you the peach growers, approved, and went into effect in January 2015. This assessment was based upon the number of peach trees per commercial orchard. What was approved in 2014 was growers who grew between 100-500 trees would be assessed $100. Growers who grew 501-2,500 trees would be assessed $250, and growers who grew more than 2,500 trees would be assessed $350. Anyone who grew less than 100 trees was not required to pay an assessment to the NC Peach Growers’ Society. The assessment money is used to promote the North Carolina peach industry through the NCDA&CS Marketing Division as well as support the research of North Carolina State University specialists who help North Carolina peach growers through valuable disease, insect, and cultural management research. Without the research provided by these specialists, most of the state’s peach production information would come from out of state sources. Some examples of what the peach assessment money has been used for are as follows:

  • New Peach Variety Release – ‘Montgomery Gold’ – Dr. Denny Werner
  • Bacterial Spot Research: Fungicide and cultural evaluations – Dr. Dave Ritchie
  • Brown Marmorated Stink Bug Scouting and Control – Dr. Jim Walgenbach
  • Orchard Floor Herbicide Research and Management – Mr. Wayne Mitchem
  • Peach Rootstock Evaluation – Dr. Mike Parker
  • BioChar Soil Improvement Evaluation – Dr. Mike Parker
  • Perpendicular V pruning evaluation for potential harvest mechanization – Dr. Mike Parker
  • NC Peach Queen Marketing Campaign
  • N.C. Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services Marketing Outreach

With that being said, it is time again for the peach growers of North Carolina to decide if they want to continue with the assessment. You will be receiving a ballot in the mail from the N.C. Cooperative Extension, Montgomery County Center, to vote on the continuation of the Assessment. This information should arrive in the mail toward the end of February. Please vote “Yes” to continue to support your industry with research from NC State University specialists and marketing assistance from the N.C. Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services.