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Mark McCann (from left) joins Justin Pate, Christian Pate, Scotty Raines, Melanie Raines, Celie Raines, Guy Hancock and CAES Dean Nick Place at a celebration announcing Scotty Raines' selection as 2022 Georgia Farmer of the Year during the annual meeting of the Georgia Agribusiness Council.  CAES News
2022 Georgia Farmer Of The Year
For Scotty Raines, the best part of farming is watching the fruits of his labor — witnessing those tiny seeds crack through the ground, bursting with life. Awe and dedication have paid off for Raines, who was just recognized with the title of 2022 Georgia Farmer of the Year by the Georgia Agribusiness Council.
UGA horticulture scientist Ye Juliet Chu is the latest peanut researcher in the College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences to produce three breeding lines from peanut’s wild relatives. (Submitted photo) CAES News
Disease-Resistant Hybrids
Using proven production practices to fight disease in the field, Georgia farmers produce half the peanuts grown in the U.S. each year. Modern peanut varieties carry few genetic defenses against some of the more devastating diseases, so peanut farmers carefully consider when to plant, whether to irrigate and when to apply fungicide and insecticide to keep those diseases from infecting the plant.
Plant pathology Professor Bob Kemerait talks about peanut diseases during the Georgia Peanut Tour in Midville, Georgia, in 2014. CAES News
Field Guy
When University of Georgia peanut pathologist Bob Kemerait does something, he does it wholeheartedly. A passionate advocate for producers both near his academic home at the University of Georgia Tifton campus and around the world, Kemerait describes himself as “a field guy,” most comfortable among the rows detecting, diagnosing and addressing the myriad diseases and pests that threaten Georgia’s second-largest row crop.
Researchers in the US and Senegal are studying why young people leave peanut farming behind and move to the city, an important question for the future of farming in Senegal’s Groundnut Basin. University of Georgia PhD student Pierre Diatta and Virginia Tech’s Brad Mills (far left and left), will present early findings of the study, along with UGA agricultural economist Genti Kostandini (far right), in a webinar next week. The team is working with Katim Toure, a collaborator at ENSA (École Nationale Supérieure d'Agriculture) in Senegal. CAES News
Young Senegalese Farmers
All over the world, farmers are aging and young people are moving to more urban areas for economic opportunities. Leaders wonder what factors push young people to abandon agriculture and whether technology or other tools can make farming a more attractive option for the next generation. Next week, researchers from the University of Georgia and Virginia Tech will present early findings from research exploring those questions in Senegal, where a team surveyed more than 1,000 peanut-growing households to explore challenges among peanut producers and learn the main reasons why young people turn away from agriculture.
Professor David Bertioli and his wife, Soraya Leal-Bertioli, senior research scientist, work together with peanut plants in their greenhouses at the Center for Applied Genetic Technologies. (Photo by Andrew Davis Tucker/UGA) CAES News
Wild Peanut Genes
A decade ago, University of Georgia plant scientists David and Soraya Bertioli were living and working in Brazil when they began to wonder about peanut plants they encountered in different corners of the world with an astounding ability to withstand fungal diseases without the use of fungicides. The Bertiolis wondered if these different plants might all have something in common. Did they owe their natural resistance to a single genetic source?
Professor David Bertioli and senior research scientist Soraya Leal-Bertioli work together with peanut plants in their greenhouses at the Center for Applied Genetic Technologies. CAES News
Best of Both Worlds
The wild relatives of modern peanut plants have the ability to withstand disease in ways that modern peanut plants can’t. The genetic diversity of these wild relatives means that they can shrug off the diseases that kill farmers’ peanut crops, but they also produce tiny nuts that are difficult to harvest because they burrow deep in the soil.
Wesley Cleveland poses for a photo in his favorite t-shirt, standing between rows of peanut crops during harvest. CAES News
Young farmer honored in Early County
Passion, a loaded tractor and a little guidance is all it took for 11-year-old Wesley Cleveland to begin following in his father and namesake Wes Cleveland’s footsteps, becoming a reliable workhand on the family farm. Most notably described as ‘the future of agriculture’ by many in Early County, the younger Cleveland is contributing to Georgia’s nation-leading peanut crop production — and he’s doing most of it on his own.
Frank McGill was born on a family farm in Tift County, Georgia, on Dec. 16, 1925, in the area where he spent most of his working career and retirement. In his autobiography, he joked, "It's obvious I didn't get very far in life!" CAES News
Frank McGill dies
J. Frank McGill, affectionally known throughout the Georgia agricultural community as “Mr. Peanut,” passed away surrounded by family on March 3 at age 95 in Tifton, Georgia.
UGA Extension peanut entomologist Mark Abney speaks about peanuts during the Midville Field Day in 2019. Faculty will give presentations online for this year's field day. CAES News
Midville Field Day 2020
University of Georgia faculty will share the latest research on cotton, soybeans, corn and other southeast Georgia crops during the annual Southeast Georgia Research and Education Center Field Day held online Aug. 12.