Georgia Peanut Achievement Club
University of Georgia, Syngenta and BASF recognize
top-yielding peanut growers

Released: July 23, 2011

TIFTON, Ga.– The University of Georgia, Syngenta Crop Protection and BASF recently recognized the achievement of 11 esteemed Georgia peanut producers at the Southern Peanut Growers Conference in Panama City Beach, Fla., for their induction into the Georgia Peanut Achievement Club.

The Georgia Peanut Achievement Club is annually coordinated by the University of Georgia and sponsored by Syngenta Crop Protection, and beginning this year, BASF.

The 2010 state winners in each category are: Kreg Freeman of Miller County in the 100 to 300 acres category and Al Sudderth in the 300 plus acres category. Freeman yielded 6,626 pounds per acre on 165 acres while Sudderth yielded 6,328 pounds per acre of 445 acres.

The district winners in the 300 to 700 acres category include Harold Hobbs of Lee County averaging 6,145 pounds per acre on 642 acres and Mike Newberry of Early County averaging 6,072 pounds per acre on 315 acres for District I. District II winners are Gaines & Dowdy of Baker County averaging 6,245 pounds per acre on 305 acres. The District III winner is Hulin Reeves, Jr. of Ben Hill County averaging 5,553 pounds per acre on 504 acres. The District IV winner is Phillip Grimes of Tift County averaging 6,259 pounds per acre of 532 acres.

“It was an outstanding year for these producers, despite very difficult growing conditions throughout most of the crop year,” says John Beasley, University of Georgia peanut agronomist. “This is the first time in history that out of the 17 entries in the Georgia Peanut Achievement Club more than half averaged more than 6,000 pounds per acre.”

The state winners of 2010 have some similarities that help them achieve high yields annually. Those similarities include a long rotation with corn, deep turning, planting twin rows and irrigating their peanuts. So, what are the other secrets that helped these two top producers maintain 6,000 pounds per acre yield for the 2010 crop year?

“There is no secret to my production practices,” Freeman says. “Everything we do is in the University of Georgia peanut production guide and we try to make sure we get everything done in a timely manner.”

He also says that it is not any one production practice like the variety, irrigation or spray block program but a combination of these production practices together that have helped him produce 6,000 pounds plus per acre.

Freeman is no stranger to the Georgia Peanut Achievement Club since his father won back in 1976 with 5,800 pounds per acre. Freeman has previously won in 1993 and 2000.

Freeman plants Georgia-06G and Tifguard on twin rows under irrigation. He began using Irrigator Pro a few years ago on his farm. This management tool has been very instrumental to him in determining when to water and how much water to apply.

The state winner for the 300 plus acres category is also no stranger to the Georgia Peanut Achievement Club. Sudderth has won in the past and is also last year’s winner of the Farm Press Peanut Profitability Award.

Sudderth credits micro-management as one avenue that has been helpful and beneficial to the achievement of high yields year after year on his farm. Sudderth has workers that are specialized for specific tasks on the farm and some have even worked on the farm for more than twenty years.

Sudderth plants the Georgia-06G variety of peanuts on a four or five year rotation with corn. He also plants in twin rows and maintains a nine-block spray program using Abound and Tilt Bravo.

Both state winners credit their local extension agents for the extra work they do in finding the answers to questions they have. They also credit the years of research in variety development that helps them tremendously on the farm. Both winners have been helpful in advancing research on their farm by participating in fungicide and insecticide trials with their local extension agents.

“The yields accomplished by the winners of the 2010 Georgia Peanut Achievement Club are a testament to their commitment and dedication,” says John Beasley, Extension peanut agronomist with the University of Georgia. “These producers pay attention to the details, such as implementing a long rotation, monitoring their fields closely and frequently, and being timely with their inputs. They do that little bit of extra that makes them the best.”

Photos from awards ceremony
Video from awards ceremony

For more information
Joy Carter
Director of Communications
phone: (229) 386-3690