Press Releases

Contact: Nora Sullivan, Georgia Auctioneers Association, 855-422-0008

Georgia auctioneer bid-calling contest 2019 set for Jan. 19

Georgia Auctioneers Association (GAA) will host the 2019 GA Auctioneer Bid Calling Contest at Veterans State Park, Public Shelter Building #1, 2459 U.S. 280, Cordele, GA 31015 on Saturday, January 19, 2019. Bid Calling Contest will occur in conjunction with a live auction event open to the Public.

Contestants should report to the Veterans State Park Public Shelter Building between 3:30-4:30PM on Saturday, Interviews will occur at 5pm. The Live Auction and Contest will begin at 6pm. Registered bidders will have the opportunity to bid on a variety of items being sold by our 2019 Georgia Auctioneer Contestants.

Grand Prize of $1000 will be presented to top winner. Trophies will be awarded to 1st, 2nd & 3rd place winners.

This is a fun family event and great opportunity to learn more about the Auction profession while getting some great deals. Georgia Auctioneers Association will also be selling Gun Raffle tickets for a Henry Rifle and a Smith & Wesson 9mm Shield. Raffle tickets can be purchased for $10 each. Raffle will be held at our Semi-Annual GAA Member Dinner on Sunday, January 20, 2019. Winner does not need to be present to win. Additional details regarding the Raffle can be found on our website at http://www.georgiaauctioneers.org/raffle-tickets-now-on-sale-for-10-each/

If you are a local business who would like to contribute, donations will be accepted until 5pm on Saturday, January 19, 2019. Anyone interested in making a donation or entering the Georgia Auctioneer Bid Calling Contest should contact Auction Coordinator Todd Spence at 229-869-4200 prior to the event.

For general information regarding registering to bid, purchasing raffle tickets, educational opportunities for Auctioneers or Licensed Real Estate Agents in the area please contact Georgia Auctioneers Association 855-422-0008. All events will occur in tandem with the GAA Winter Conference at Lake Blackshear Resort Jan 19-21, 2019. Visit http://GeorgiaAuctioneers.org for a full agenda, registration prices and educational offerings.

About Georgia Auctioneers Association

The Georgia Auctioneers Association is a strong non-profit trade association of professionals who have organized to promote and advance the auction profession. Our Board of Directors meets monthly to discuss issues affecting the auction industry, plan educational and networking opportunities. Our membership includes Auctioneers from multiple states, specializing in a variety of areas including real estate, automobile, retail / personal property, livestock and more.

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Disclaimer

The content and accuracy of all information contained in this press release is the responsibility of the originating company or group. All information contained in this press release may be independently checked prior to any use or publication. Information and/or opinions expressed in this press release are not necessarily the views of Georgia Press Association or its affiliates.


Contact: Joy Crosby, Georgia Peanut Commission, 229-386-3690

Georgia Peanut Commission board members renominated

TIFTON, Ga. — Three Georgia Peanut Commission board members were renominated without opposition to the Georgia Peanut Commission board of directors at nomination meetings held on Dec. 10, 2018. The Georgia Farm Bureau Federation conducted the nomination meetings for the commission’s districts two, four and five.

Armond Morris, Tift County, representing district two; Rodney Dawson, Pulaski County, representing district four and Donald Chase, Macon County, representing district five, all previously held the seat for their district, which expired Dec. 31, 2018. Since only one person was nominated for each district, no election is required and the nominated person automatically becomes a member of the Georgia Peanut Commission Board. Now, after renomination, they will serve Georgia peanut farmers on the board for the next three years.

The Georgia peanut production area is divided into five districts based on acreage distribution and geographical location with one board member representing each district. Additional board members include: Joe Boddiford of Screven County, representing district three and Tim Burch of Baker County, representing district one.

The Georgia Peanut Commission represents more than 4,500 peanut farm families in the state and conducts programs in the areas of research, promotion and education. For more information on the programs of the Georgia Peanut Commission, visit www.gapeanuts.com.

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Disclaimer

The content and accuracy of all information contained in this press release is the responsibility of the originating company or group. All information contained in this press release may be independently checked prior to any use or publication. Information and/or opinions expressed in this press release are not necessarily the views of Georgia Press Association or its affiliates.


Contact: Joy Crosby, Georgia Peanut Commission, 229-386-3690

Georgia Peanut Farm Show and Conference set for Jan. 17

Kelley Manufacturing Co. sponsors the Grand Door Prize

TIFTON, Ga. — Producers can improve the bottom-line of their farming operation with knowledge, connections and information gained at the 43rd annual Georgia Peanut Farm Show and Conference, held at the University of Georgia Tifton Campus Conference Center, Jan. 17, 2019, from 8:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Peanut farmers and those involved in the peanut industry will be able to learn more about the latest products, services and peanut research at the show, which is sponsored by the Georgia Peanut Commission.

The one-day show offers farmers a full day to view the products and services of more than 100 exhibitors and a day of education. A free luncheon begins at noon for all peanut farmers in attendance. The Georgia Peanut Commission will present a short program beginning at 12:15 p.m. that will cover award presentations and an update from the National Peanut Board and Washington. The Georgia Peanut Commission, in cooperation with the OneBlood, will host a blood drive from 8:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. during the show.

The University of Georgia Peanut Team will present an educational peanut production seminar from 9:00 until 10:30 a.m. Team members will provide information on peanut production tips and have a question and answer session with team members specializing in irrigation management, insects, disease and nematodes, weed management and economics. Farmers will also have the opportunity to earn private or commercial pesticide applicator certification.

An Industry Seed Seminar will also be held from 10:35 to 11:35 a.m. during the show. This event is sponsored by the American Peanut Shellers Association Committee on Variety & Seed Development, Southern Peanut Farmers Federation and the Georgia Peanut Commission. Growers will be able to learn about peanut varieties available for 2019 and varieties on the horizon.

During this year’s show, Kelley Manufacturing Co. is providing the Grand Door Prize Package of one season’s use of a new peanut combine (choice of four-row, six-row or combine with Unload-On-The-Go option). At the end of the 2019 season, the winner has the option of purchasing the combine from an authorized KMC dealer with $15,000 off the list price. Also, KMC is providing a second drawing for one season’s use of a new Digger Shaker Inverter (choice of rigid or flex model in a two-row, four-row or six-row) or the use of a new KMC Dump Cart. At the end of the 2019 season, the winner has the option of purchasing the digger or dump cart from an authorized KMC dealer with 10 percent off the list price.

Additionally, farmers can register to win the Grower Prize, donated by Amadas Industries. This prize includes a certificate good for the amount of $10,000.00 towards the purchase of any new Amadas self-propelled combine or $5,000 towards the purchase of a new four-row or six-row Amadas pull-type combine or $1,000 towards the purchase of a new Amadas peanut dump cart. Amadas is also offering a customized Grizzly cooler which will contain a certificate good for a parts credit of $1,000 for Amadas parts through a local authorized Amadas dealer.

The winners of the Grand Door Prize and the Grower Prize must be certified peanut farmers with an FSA farm number and present to win.   

For more information on the show, contact GPC at 229-386-3470 or online at www.gapeanuts.com.

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Disclaimer

The content and accuracy of all information contained in this press release is the responsibility of the originating company or group. All information contained in this press release may be independently checked prior to any use or publication. Information and/or opinions expressed in this press release are not necessarily the views of Georgia Press Association or its affiliates.


Contact: Jessie Bland, Georgia Peanut Commission, 229-386-3472

Peanut Leadership Academy Class XI includes Georgia farmers and shellers

TIFTON, Ga. – Twenty peanut growers and sheller representatives from across the Southeast, Texas and Virginia-Carolina area began Class XI of the Peanut Leadership Academy Dec. 9-12, 2018, in Panama City Beach, Florida. The Peanut Leadership Academy is hosted by the Southern Peanut Farmers Federation and is a cooperative effort between Syngenta Crop Protection, the American Peanut Shellers Association and grower organizations. The program began in 1998 with the first class of 14 peanut growers from Alabama, Florida and Georgia. Since then, the academy has grown to include farmers from Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Texas, Virginia and sheller representatives.

Activities in the leadership program are structured to give participants a thorough understanding of the U.S. peanut industry. Throughout the course of 18 months and five sessions, program attendees participate in sessions ranging from field trips, meetings with industry leaders and professional development training, as well as one session in Washington, D.C., where class members have an opportunity to visit with members of Congress about issues affecting the peanut industry. During this time, class members build on leadership skills, discuss and debate key industry issues and build relationships.

During the first session, the class members participated in leadership team building skills, etiquette training and learned more about the entire peanut industry while joining the Southern Peanut Farmers Federation annual meeting.

Georgia participants in PLA Class X include: Knapp Boddiford, Sylvania; Blake Edenfield, Brooklet; Megan Fletcher, Golden Peanut & Tree Nuts; Andrew Grimes, Tifton; and Kevin Rentz, Brinson.

Session two of Class XI is scheduled for April 3-5, 2019. For more information on the Peanut Leadership Academy, contact PLA Coordinator, Jessie Bland at the Georgia Peanut Commission or visit www.southernpeanutfarmers.org.

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Disclaimer

The content and accuracy of all information contained in this press release is the responsibility of the originating company or group. All information contained in this press release may be independently checked prior to any use or publication. Information and/or opinions expressed in this press release are not necessarily the views of Georgia Press Association or its affiliates.


Contact: Marjorie Dykes, Georgia Manufacturing Alliance, 770-338-0051

2018 a banner year for the Georgia Manufacturing Alliance

Atlanta, GA – The Georgia Manufacturing Alliance (GMA) experienced unprecedented growth in 2018 surpassing even the expectations of CEO and founder, Jason Moss. Georgia was named for the 6th consecutive year as the Number 1 state to do business, and as the economy and the manufacturing sector continues to improve in the U.S., the manufacturing community in Georgia is reaping the benefits.

“I saw a need in the marketplace for manufacturers to connect and learn from each other,” said Jason Moss, CEO of the Georgia Manufacturing Alliance. “GMA was founded in 2008 as a way to find local resources and learn best business practices from others in the industry.”

Some of the Georgia Manufacturing Alliance’s 2018 highlights included:

  • 10th Anniversary Celebration and Ribbon Cutting at GMA new office building
  • Addition of 2 GMA staff members
  • 100 new members and 5 new annual sponsors
  • 17 Joint Industry Association of Georgia (JIAG) partners added
  • 120 plant tours, educational workshops, and networking events throughout the state
  • 16 consumer product plant tours in July 2018 including name brands like Daniel Defense, Duracell, Okabashi, Sherwin Williams, Southwire, and Sunny Delight among others
  • BuyFromGA.com website developed to promote consumer-based products
  • Over 800 attendees at the Georgia Manufacturing Summit with keynotes from Gulfstream President, Mark Burns and Vice President, Eric Rojek from Thrush Aircraft
  • 4th Annual People of Manufacturing Awards
  • 2 Editions of the Georgia Manufacturing Directory –Sited as the #1 resource guide for the manufacturing community
  • National and International Press Coverage – Atlanta Business Chronicle, Business RadioX, Gwinnett Daily Post, IndustrialSage, Marietta Daily Journal, , Savannah News, Supply Chain NOW Radio,       Welding Journal along with many other media sources

“As we reflect on 2018 and our 10th Anniversary year, we are very thankful for everyone who partnered with us to bring about this success,” stated Mr. Moss. “Our main objective is to provide our manufacturers, suppliers, and service industries the resources they need for every area of their business and we are looking forward to 2019 being our best year ever.”

ABOUT GMA: The Georgia Manufacturing Alliance (GMA) is a membership-based industry organization founded in 2008 to support Georgia’s manufacturing community. GMA provides monthly plant tours, educational sessions, tradeshows, and unique networking opportunities designed to help make profitable business connections for its members. The Georgia Manufacturing Directory, Georgia Manufacturing Summit, Georgia Manufacturing Calendar, and Buy From Georgia website are additional resources produced by GMA. To learn more about the organization, membership, and upcoming events, please call 770-338-0051 or visit their website https://www.georgiamanufacturingalliance.com/

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Disclaimer

The content and accuracy of all information contained in this press release is the responsibility of the originating company or group. All information contained in this press release may be independently checked prior to any use or publication. Information and/or opinions expressed in this press release are not necessarily the views of Georgia Press Association or its affiliates.


Contact: Taylor Sills, Georgia Cotton Commission, 478-988-4235, taylor@georgiacotton.org

Davis, Mathis named to cotton commission board; Webb honored for service 

In early December, the Commodity Commission Ex Oficio Committee met to make appointments to the Georgia Cotton Commission Board of Directors. GCC Chairman Bart Davis, a cotton, peanut, corn, and cattle farmer from Doerun, Georgia, was reappointed to another term on the board. Chad Mathis, a cotton, peanut, and corn farmer from Arlington, Georgia, Mathis succeeds Jimmy Webb of Calhoun County. At the Commission’s December meeting of the Board of Directors, Webb was honored for his fifteen years of service to Georgia’s cotton producers.

Bart Davis operates Davis Farms with his wife, daughter, and two sons. Davis is a longtime supporter of FFA and holds a State FFA Degree as well as being named Georgia Star Farmer. Davis has also been named Farmer of the Year at the Annual Peanut Festival in Sylvester. In addition to serving as the Georgia Cotton Commission’s Chairman, Davis serves as chairman of the Boll Weevil Eradication Foundation of Georgia, a Delegate to the National Cotton Council, a Director for Southern Cotton Growers, and as an Alternate Director for Cotton Incorporated.

Chad Mathis is a partner in Mathis Farms General Partners along with his father and brother. He graduated from Valdosta State University with a BBA in Marketing and returned to the farm in 1998. Mathis previously served the Georgia Cotton Commission as a board advisor. In addition to service with the Commission, Mathis serves the industry as a delegate to the National Cotton Council of America, state co-chairman for the American Cotton Producers of the National Cotton Council of America, a board member of the Southern Cotton Growers, and an alternate delegate to Cotton Incorporated. He is also a graduate of Leadership Baker. He has three sons who attend Southwest Georgia Academy in Damascus. When asked about his appointment, he said, “I am glad to be a part of the Cotton Commission and excited to help best serve my fellow cotton producers across the state.”

Jimmy Webb is a cotton, peanut, and corn producer from Leary, Georgia. Webb had served from 2000-2011 and 2015-2018 on the Georgia Cotton Commission Board of Directors. He will continue to serve the industry as Treasurer of The Cotton Board and as a director of Staplcotn. Webb has three adult children and two grandchildren. In his comments at the Commission meeting, Webb highlighted how honored he was to have served the industry in many capacities over the years, and is looking forward to the future of the cotton industry in Georgia and the United States.

The Georgia Cotton Commission is a producer-funded organization located in Perry, Georgia. The Commission began in 1965. Georgia cotton producers pay an assessment enabling the Commission to invest in programs of research, promotion, and education on behalf of all cotton producers of Georgia. For more information about the Georgia Cotton Commission please call 478-988-4235 or on the web at www.georgiacottoncommission.org.

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Disclaimer

The content and accuracy of all information contained in this press release is the responsibility of the originating company or group. All information contained in this press release may be independently checked prior to any use or publication. Information and/or opinions expressed in this press release are not necessarily the views of Georgia Press Association or its affiliates.


Contact: Micajah Sturdivant, MMI Hotel Group, 601-326-8161, msturdivant@mmihg.com

MMI Hotel Group leads Hilton brand rankings 

Recently recognized as the #1 ranking Home2 Suites in the United States according to Hilton’s Balanced Scorecard which measures quality of offering and experience, Home2 Suites, St Simons Island, GA has more than their complimentary green apples at the front desk to be proud of.  Owned and operated by MMI Hotel Group, the hotel quickly ramped up its performance to be on par with its competitive set after opening January 2017.  While the portfolio of Home2 Suites hotels has more than doubled since then, MMI’s St Simons property has sustained an experience for its guests that exceeds all the rest.

Bart Johnson, a tenured MMI Hotel Group General Manager, has assembled a group of personalities that work well together on behalf of their fellow team members and their guests.  “I am fortunate to have a talented team who appreciates the opportunities for advancement in and deepening their understanding of our industry,” states B. Johnson.  That same yearning for advancement is what has propelled Bart and so many other leaders in the MMI organization over the company’s storied 62-year history.

The entire portfolio of Hilton product that MMI manages ranks in the top 3% of their respective Hilton Garden Inn and Hampton Inn & Suites brands for service.  Whether a new box and team or not, MMI’s culture creates operating models that resonate with team members and travelers alike.  Hilton Garden Inn – Madison, MS currently ranks 34th out of 702 HGI’s for Overall Experience.  Hampton Inn & Suites, Saraland, Alabama’s overall experience ranks them as #25 out of 942 hotels with service being #7 of 942.

In an industry with new supply continuously arriving and guest expectations ever increasing, the stability of MMI Hotel Group’s principals rooted in early advancement of the hospitality industry continues to produce healthy results.

Founded in 1956, MMI Hotel Group, formerly known as Mississippi Management, Inc. is a private, full-suite hotel management company focused principally on people.  Currently serving team members based at full- and focused-service product across the Sun Belt, this third-generation company has established a tradition of successful partnerships grounded in good old-fashioned Southern hospitality.  While MMI’s culture is a constant, the diversity of the MMI portfolio – franchised and independent, core and lifestyle brands – remains a competitive advantage for the company as best practices generate superior results.  (www.MMIHotelGroup.com)

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Disclaimer

The content and accuracy of all information contained in this press release is the responsibility of the originating company or group. All information contained in this press release may be independently checked prior to any use or publication. Information and/or opinions expressed in this press release are not necessarily the views of Georgia Press Association or its affiliates.


Contact: Taylor Sills, Georgia Cotton Commission, 478-988-4235, taylor@georgiacotton.org

Speakers announced for Georgia Cotton Commission’s 12th annual meeting Jan. 30 

The Georgia Cotton Commission is pleased to announce the guest speakers at the Commission’s 12th Annual Meeting scheduled for Wednesday, January 30, 2018, at the UGA Tifton Campus Conference Center. The annual meeting is held in conjunction with the UGA Cotton Production Workshop conducted by the UGA Research & Extension Cotton Team.

The UGA Cotton Production Workshop will feature breakout sessions where attendees will learn the latest technical production strategies from the researchers whose projects are funded by the Commission’s research program. The Georgia Cotton Commission Annual Meeting will follow the breakout sessions and feature speakers from several industry organizations. 

The program speakers are J. Lee Cromley, Vice President, Southern Cotton Growers; K. Michael Tate, Vice Chairman, National Cotton Council of America; Bruce Atherly, Executive Director, Cotton Council International.

Lee Cromley is a cotton and peanut farmer from Brooklet, Georgia who is currently serving as Vice President of the Southern Cotton Growers, an organization that represents thousands of cotton growers throughout Alabama, Georgia, South Carolina, North Carolina, Florida, and Virginia.  Cromley is also a board member for the Georgia Cotton Commission, Bulloch Gin, Bulloch County FSA, and Farmers & Merchants Bank and Board Advisor for the National Cotton Council of America.  He is a graduate of the University of Georgia College of Agricultural & Environmental Sciences and has been farming with his brother Charlie since 1983.

Michael Tate is a cotton, soybean, wheat, corn, and pumpkin farmer from Huntsville, Alabama who is currently serving as the Vice Chairman of the National Cotton Council of America, the trade organization for cotton production in the United States.  Tate is the former president of the Southern Cotton Growers, former chair of the American Cotton Producers, board member for Alabama Farmers Co-op and Staplcotn, and board advisor for Cotton Council International.

Bruce Atherley has a long and successful track record in global marketing and management. He previously served as Vice President, Global Marketing for Kao, Inc., a Tokyo-based global manufacturer of personal care and household products. He also worked for the William Wrigley Jr. Company, serving as its Vice President of North American Confections Marketing, President and General Manager of Wrigley Canada and Managing Director, Global Branding Services. Prior to Wrigley, he served as Vice President of Retail Marketing for the H.J. Heinz Company, President and CEO of Pet Life, Inc., Marketing Director, Black and Decker and Product Manager, Cheerios for General Mills Inc. Atherley assumed his current role as Executive Director of Cotton Council International in October 2015.

Following the Annual Meeting speakers, the Commission will host lunch where sponsors will be recognized and door prizes will be given away. The meeting, production workshop, and lunch are open to not only cotton growers, but anyone interested in the cotton industry. The UGA Cotton Production Workshop breakout sessions will be repeated after lunch.

There is no charge to attend. Pre-registration is requested to help with meal plans.  Register online at  www.ugatiftonconference.caes.uga.edu or call (229) 386-3416.

Thank you to our sponsors:

Deltapine/Bayer Crop Science – Phytogen/Corteva Agriscience
Actagro – Agri-AFC – Alltech – Americot, Inc.-NexGen – Ameris Bank – Choice Cotton Company – CNI
Flint Ag & Turf – Holder Ag Consulting – Indigo Ag – Lasseter Equipment Group
McLean Marechal Insurance/Nationwide Insurance – Nachurs – Nutrien Ag Solutions
Pinnacle Marketing – Rabo AgriFinance – R.W. Griffin/Coffee County Gin/Four Corners Cotton Gin SePRO Corporation – Southeast AgNet – Staplcotn – Syngenta – Triangle Chemical – Valent USA – Valley Irrigation

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Disclaimer

The content and accuracy of all information contained in this press release is the responsibility of the originating company or group. All information contained in this press release may be independently checked prior to any use or publication. Information and/or opinions expressed in this press release are not necessarily the views of Georgia Press Association or its affiliates.


Contact: Greg Brooks, Walton EMC, 770-266-2307

Walton EMC contracts with 200 megawatts of new solar projects for Facebook’s Newton data center

MONROE, Ga. – Walton Electric Membership Corporation (EMC), a consumer-owned utility with a reputation for energy innovation, has executed contracts with two solar developers for three new solar projects as part of its agreement to supply 100 percent renewable energy for Facebook’s data center in Newton County, Georgia. The collaboration is the largest solar development project in Georgia.

Facebook chose Walton EMC as the power supplier for the Newton Data Center when it announced the 970,000 square foot facility in March.

Silicon Ranch and Strata Solar will construct world-class solar power plants that will support the new data center. The facilities will be located in Southwest Georgia.

“We are happy to welcome Silicon Ranch and Strata Solar to the quality partnership of Facebook, Walton EMC and Morgan Stanley to complete the groundbreaking energy supply arrangement for Facebook’s Newton Data Center,” said Walton EMC CEO Ronnie Lee. “Our unique agreements will serve as models for similar projects all across the country and bring noteworthy economic rewards locally.”

“We are thrilled to be working with Walton EMC, Silicon Ranch and Strata Solar to bring more than 200 megawatts (mW) of new solar resources to Georgia,” said Rachel Peterson, vice president of data center strategy for Facebook. “We are committed to supporting all of Facebook’s operations with 100 percent renewable energy and these new solar facilities will help us meet that goal for our Newton Data Center. Developing these resources within the same electric grid that supports our data center will bring even more investment to the region.”

The Newton Data Center is Facebook’s ninth such state-of-the-art facility in the country. The centers are among the most advanced, energy-efficient facilities in the world. They use 38 percent less electricity than the average data center.

Economic boon for Georgia

The solar power plants will economically benefit local communities, with ripple effects felt all across the state.

Every facility will add substantial revenue to each county’s tax income which will benefit local school systems.

Construction will create more than 800 jobs, with additional employment for ongoing operation and maintenance. Local labor and local contractors will fill most of these positions.

The total investment of Silicon Ranch and Strata Solar will reach more than $230 million. Collectively, this is the largest solar development in Georgia, according to the Solar Energy Industries Association.

Silicon Ranch Project

  • Location: Early County, Georgia
  • Size (electrical): 102.5 mW (AC)
  • Expected Completion: 2019
  • Jobs created: construction – 400; operation and maintenance ­– two to three plus local contractors

The Early County facility will deploy the first locally-produced solar modules from Hanwha Q CELLS’s new manufacturing facility in Georgia, which is also the largest in the United States.

Strata Solar Projects

  • Location: Calhoun and Colquitt Counties, Georgia
  • Size (electrical): Calhoun – 80 mW (AC); Colquitt – 20 mW (AC)
  • Expected Completion: 2020
  • Jobs created: construction – 400; operation and maintenance ­– two to three plus local contractors

Growing Georgia’s economy with renewable energy

Facebook’s emphasis on siting renewable resources within the same electric grid as its data centers created an opportunity to bring additional investment in solar generation to Georgia.

“Partnering on the project with a customer-focused, consumer-owned electric cooperative helped to inspire the collaboration,” added Matt Kisber, CEO of Silicon Ranch.

“Facebook and Walton EMC are driven by a ‘concern for community’ and a commitment to the customers they serve. These principles have made them global and national leaders in their respective markets,” said Kisber. “As the long-term owner of every solar project we develop, Silicon Ranch shares these values, and we are proud to support the renewable energy goals of Facebook’s Newton Data Center while bringing an economic shot in the arm to rural Georgia.”

“Innovative companies like Facebook, partnered with customer-focused utilities like Walton EMC, are driving renewable energy growth across the country,” said Markus Wilhelm, CEO of Strata Solar.

“Strata is proud to bring our reputation for quality and efficiency to two more projects in Georgia,” he said. “By partnering on clean energy projects like these, we can grow the Georgia economy while bringing significant benefits to local communities.”

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About Walton EMC

Walton EMC is a customer-owned power company that serves accounts over its 10-county service area between Atlanta and Athens, Ga. Its primary focus is providing exceptional service to its 128,000 residential, commercial and industrial customer-owner accounts while also caring for the area’s communities. Learn more at facebook.com/waltonemc.

About Silicon Ranch Corporation

Silicon Ranch is the U.S. solar platform for Shell and one of the largest independent solar power producers in the country. Silicon Ranch develops to own all of its projects for the long-term, a distinction that means the company is deeply committed to its partners and communities and stands behind the performance of its facilities day in and day out. The company’s operating portfolio includes more than 120 facilities across 14 states from New York to California, including the first large-scale solar projects in Georgia, Tennessee, Mississippi and Arkansas. To learn more, visit siliconranch.com and go to facebook.com/siliconranch.

About Strata Solar

Strata Solar is a leading provider of utility-scale, commercial and industrial solar photovoltaic systems. Strata has constructed over 1 gigawatt (gW) in total solar capacity and maintains a development pipeline of over 3gW. The company’s integrated approach, which includes development, financing, engineering, procurement, construction, operations and maintenance, allows Strata to consistently build quality projects with long-term ownership in mind. Strata is consistently ranked as one of the largest utility-scale solar integrators in the U.S. To learn more, visit stratasolar.com.

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Disclaimer

The content and accuracy of all information contained in this press release is the responsibility of the originating company or group. All information contained in this press release may be independently checked prior to any use or publication. Information and/or opinions expressed in this press release are not necessarily the views of Georgia Press Association or its affiliates.


Contact: Marjorie Dykes, Georgia Manufacturing Alliance, 770-338-0051

Optimum Productions, award-winning video marketing agency, joins Georgia Manufacturing Alliance as developer sponsor

Atlanta, GA — The Georgia Manufacturing Alliance continues to expand its reach and has added Optimum Productions as an annual sponsor. Optimum Productions is an award-winning video production agency that provides video and sales expertise for all size businesses and name brands such as Anixter, Coca-Cola, Hewlett Packard, HD Supply, NCR, Stanley Black & Decker, and SunTrust. They have won nine Telly Awards and their team combines video storytelling and technical know-how with an extensive range of production services that bring businesses and products to life.

Optimum Productions also produces IndustrialSage which is a weekly video-podcast series that focuses on digital marketing for the industrial and manufacturing space. They interview leading professionals to learn how they are solving challenges within the industry and have produced over 60 episodes to date.

“It’s clear that industrial marketers and sales teams are experiencing a dramatic shift as technologies rapidly evolve and millennials quickly overtake Gen X in the workforce,” said Danny Gonzales, CEO and Executive Producer of Optimum Productions. “94% of B2B buyers do some form of online research before buying; and 80% of B2B buyers have already made up their decision before they contact you. We are excited to be able to bring our expertise in digital sales and marketing to the manufacturing community and help them be more profitable for 2019.”

On January 15th in Alpharetta, Optimum Productions will host a hands-on workshop on Digital Sales & Marketing that will help manufacturers and suppliers build digital campaigns and improve sales. Topics will include: The State of the Industry; Inbound Marketing 101; SMART Goals; The Content Funnel; Sales & Marketing Enablement; Software & Tools (Tips/Tricks) Click here to learn more: https://www.georgiamanufacturingalliance.com/events/digital-sales-marketing-lunch-learn-alpharetta

“Sales and marketing are always the number-one topic that manufacturers want to learn about,” said Jason Moss, CEO of the Georgia Manufacturing Alliance. “Optimum Productions produced our opening video and led our Sales & Marketing panel at the Georgia Manufacturing Summit in October. They are on the leading edge of the business video industry, and we are excited to add them as a GMA sponsor and to have them on our Educational Team to provide Digital Sales & Marketing trainings for our members.”

ABOUT GMA: The Georgia Manufacturing Alliance (GMA) is a membership-based industry organization founded in 2008 to support Georgia’s manufacturing community. GMA provides monthly plant tours, educational sessions, tradeshows, and unique networking opportunities designed to help make profitable business connections for its members. The Georgia Manufacturing Directory, Georgia Manufacturing Summit, Georgia Manufacturing Calendar, and Buy From Georgia website are additional resources produced by GMA. To learn more about the organization, membership, and upcoming events, please call 770-338-0051 or visit their website https://www.georgiamanufacturingalliance.com/

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Disclaimer

The content and accuracy of all information contained in this press release is the responsibility of the originating company or group. All information contained in this press release may be independently checked prior to any use or publication. Information and/or opinions expressed in this press release are not necessarily the views of Georgia Press Association or its affiliates.


Contact: Marjorie Dykes, Georgia Manufacturing Alliance, 770-338-0051

Consumers are supporting local jobs by shopping from BuyFromGa.com

Atlanta, GA – The Made in Georgia movement is sweeping across the state, and consumers are checking out www.BuyFromGeorgia.com to find products they can purchase for the holidays. Studies show that there are currently 606 million products on Amazon, and this website was created to educate people on products that are made in our state.

The www.BuyFromGA.com website features 100s of items that are manufactured in Georgia that consumers can purchase using their Amazon account. This site was developed by the Georgia Manufacturing Alliance who is on a mission to educate people about what is made in their community and the impact those goods have on their local economy.

The www.BuyFromGA.com website features name brand and unique items that would make great gifts for the holidays while supporting Georgia employees and their families. Just a sample of gift ideas includes:

  • Claxton Fruit Cakes made in Claxton, GA
  • Kumho Tires made in Macon, GA
  • Magic Circle Trampolines made in Columbus, GA
  • Mizuno Golf Clubs made in Norcross, GA
  • Okabashi Shoes made in Buford, GA
  • Primo Grills made in Tucker, GA
  • Savannah Bee Honey and Beauty Products made in Savannah, GA
  • West Georgia Cornhole made in Winston, GA

“The www.BuyFromGA.com site was developed to make people aware of how they can make a difference by shopping and buying local made goods,” said Jason Moss, CEO of the Georgia Manufacturing Alliance. “We want to continue our mission to support the manufacturers in our state and to bring awareness of the 100s of consumer based products that are produced in our great state.”

ABOUT GMA: The Georgia Manufacturing Alliance (GMA) is a membership-based industry organization founded in 2008 to support Georgia’s manufacturing community. GMA provides monthly plant tours, educational sessions, tradeshows, and unique networking opportunities designed to help make profitable business connections for its members. The Georgia Manufacturing Directory, Georgia Manufacturing Summit, and Georgia Manufacturing Calendar are additional resources produced by GMA. To learn more about the organization, membership, and upcoming events, please call 770-338-0051 or visit their website http://www.GeorgiaManufacturingAlliance.com.

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Disclaimer

The content and accuracy of all information contained in this press release is the responsibility of the originating company or group. All information contained in this press release may be independently checked prior to any use or publication. Information and/or opinions expressed in this press release are not necessarily the views of Georgia Press Association or its affiliates.


Contact: Taylor Sills, Georgia Cotton Commission, 478-988-4235

Jacobs and Hayes presented 2018 King Cotton Awards

Local UGA Cooperative Extension Service agents are an incredible resource for cotton farmers across Georgia. Agents are known for delivering timely and accurate information, which is instrumental for the success of Georgia’s farmers. They also do community specific research, education, and outreach programs, designed at helping farmers maximizing yields and efficiency.

For the eighteenth year in a row, the Georgia Cotton Commission sponsored the King Cotton Awards to recognize outstanding contributions of county agents to Georgia cotton producers. The Senior Award is for agents with 10 or more years of experience, while the Junior Award, named the Allen B. Fulford Award, is for those with less than 10 years of service. The latter award honors the accomplishments and memory of Allen B. Fulford as a county Extension agent and state cotton agronomist. The awards were presented at the 2018 Georgia Association of County Agricultural Agents Annual Meeting & Professional Improvement Conference held in Buford in November. The Georgia Cotton Commission is proud to salute the excellent work that County Extension Agents do for farmers across the state.

The 2018 Senior King Cotton Award Winner is James Jacobs of Pierce County, where he serves as County Extension Coordinator as well as Agriculture & Natural Resources Agent. Jacobs previously served producers in Ware and Berrien Counties. James works with the UGA Cotton On-Farm Variety Evaluation Program as well as doing individual trials on conventional and nematode-resistant varieties, all of which helps producers select the best varieties of cotton to plant for the current year, as well as in the future. He also goes far beyond the call of duty, by helping mentor county agents across the state.

The 2018 Allen B. Fulford Award recipient is Bryan Hayes of Mitchell County, where he serves as ANR Agent. Bryan started with UGA Cooperative Extension in 2014, and has made a major impact on his community since that time. Hayes also participates in UGA On-Farm Cotton Variety Evaluation Program trials as well as helping coordinate other research studies with the University of Georgia as well as the University of Florida. Bryan has become a leading county agent on cotton in his four years in Mitchell County, and is continuing to grow as a leader in the extension service.

The Georgia Cotton Commission is a producer-funded organization located in Perry, Georgia. The Commission began in 1965. Georgia cotton producers pay an assessment enabling the Commission to invest in programs of research, promotion, and education on behalf of all cotton producers of Georgia. For more information about the Georgia Cotton Commission please call 478-988-4235 or on the web at www.georgiacottoncommission.org.

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Disclaimer

The content and accuracy of all information contained in this press release is the responsibility of the originating company or group. All information contained in this press release may be independently checked prior to any use or publication. Information and/or opinions expressed in this press release are not necessarily the views of Georgia Press Association or its affiliates.


Contact: Joy Crosby, Georgia Peanut Commission, 229-386-3690

43rd annual Georgia Peanut Farm Show set for Jan. 17 in Tifton

TIFTON, Ga. — Make plans to attend the 43rd annual Georgia Peanut Farm Show and Conference scheduled for Thursday, Jan. 17, 2019, from 8:30 a.m. – 2:30 p.m. at the University of Georgia Tifton Campus Conference Center in Tifton, Georgia. The one-day show is free and open to all farmers and industry representatives to attend.

Attendees will have the opportunity to visit with more than 100 agribusinesses and organizations in the peanut and agricultural industry. Farmers will be able to earn private and commercial pesticide applicator certification, as well as learn about cutting-edge research and developments during the University of Georgia Peanut Production Seminar and industry-wide sponsored Peanut Seed Seminar.

Farm Show chairman Rodney Dawson is looking forward to the 2019 show and having a large crowd of farmers attend like previous years. “I encourage farmers to attend this one-day show in Tifton,” Dawson says. “The knowledge they will gain from industry representatives and seminars is an investment in the future of their farm.”

The Georgia Peanut Commission, in cooperation with OneBlood, will host a blood drive from   9:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m. during the show. At the close of the day, there will be nearly $10,000 in door prizes presented to farmers, as well as a Grand Door Prize, vendor products, certificates and equipment.

For more information on the show, contact the Georgia Peanut Commission office at 229-386-3470 or visit www.gapeanuts.com.

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Disclaimer

The content and accuracy of all information contained in this press release is the responsibility of the originating company or group. All information contained in this press release may be independently checked prior to any use or publication. Information and/or opinions expressed in this press release are not necessarily the views of Georgia Press Association or its affiliates.


Contact: Joy Crosby, Georgia Peanut Commission, 229-386-3690

Nominations open for Outstanding Georgia Young Peanut Farmer Award

TIFTON, Ga.— Nominations are now open for the Outstanding Georgia Young Peanut Farmer. The state winner will be announced at the Georgia Peanut Farm Show on Thursday, Jan. 17, 2019, in Tifton, Georgia. The award is sponsored by the Georgia Peanut Commission and BASF.

The Outstanding Georgia Young Peanut Farmer Award is based upon the applicant’s overall farm operation; environmental and stewardship practices; and leadership, civic, church, and community service activities.

“We have so many young peanut farmers making a difference in their communities and I consider this awards program a great opportunity to recognize one young peanut farmer for their contributions to the agricultural industry,” says Armond Morris, chairman of the Georgia Peanut Commission.

The award is open for any active Georgia peanut farmer who is not over 45 years of age, as of Jan. 17, 2019. An individual may receive the award only once. There is no limit on the number of applicants from each county in Georgia.

“BASF is honored to be a sponsor of the Outstanding Georgia Young Peanut Farmer Award,” says Dan Watts, district manager of BASF Crop Protection Products. “We are committed to agriculture and bringing new innovative solutions to producers that will allow them to continue to be successful.”

Applications are due to the GPC office by Friday, Dec. 14, 2018. The award application is available online at www.gapeanuts.com or by contacting Joy Crosby at 229-386-3690 or joycrosby@gapeanuts.com.

Previous Georgia winners include Elton Baldy of Norman Park, Brandon Branch of Baxley, Trey Dunaway of Hawkinsville, Andrew Grimes of Tifton, Randy Branch of Baxley, James Hitchcock Jr. of Tennille, Brad Thompson of Donalsonville, Greg Mims of Donalsonville, Jim Waters of Blackshear and Jimmy Webb of Leary, Georgia. The award winner receives registration and hotel accommodations to attend the Southern Peanut Growers Conference, July 18-20, 2019, and a sign to display at his or her farm.

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Disclaimer

The content and accuracy of all information contained in this press release is the responsibility of the originating company or group. All information contained in this press release may be independently checked prior to any use or publication. Information and/or opinions expressed in this press release are not necessarily the views of Georgia Press Association or its affiliates.


Contact: Lisa Ignoto, KAMMCO

800-232-2259

KAMMCO collaboration with military health system to deliver critical health information across the globe

(OCT. 26, 2018) On August 30, the Military Health System (MHS) added critical medical information from seven physician-led health information exchanges (HIEs) across the nation.  This was facilitated by the Kansas Health Information Network (KHIN), KAMMCO and the eHealth Exchange. Laura McCrary, Ed.D, Executive Director of KHIN comments on the significance, “This represents the growing capabilities of HIEs to share records in all locations from which a patient has received care.”

With this new development, medical records can be shared across the world as military personnel and their families transition between multiple locations, stateside or overseas. Military hospitals and clinics now can quickly and securely access patients’ personal health information 24/7 and have access from the physician-led HIEs in Kansas, Connecticut, New Jersey, South Carolina, Georgia, Missouri and Louisiana.

“MHS cares for 9.4 million beneficiaries, delivering care globally in military hospitals and clinics and providing coordinated, integrated care through civilian networks,” said Kimberly Heermann-Do, Health Information Exchange Office Lead in the EHR Modernization Program Management Office. Heermann-Do added, “Through HIEs, records are available securely from the private sector if the HIE is onboarded to the MHS. Having access to records for patients across the KAMMCO network will assist MHS providers with clinical decisions.”

“The Medical Society of New Jersey (MSNJ) has a long history of supporting the healthcare needs of our active duty military in New Jersey. Sharing clinical information from our physician practices with MHS through OneHealth New Jersey furthers our support in this important area,” shared Larry Downs, JD, MSNJ CEO. “With a large joint base located in New Jersey our physician members provide care to many active duty military and their families.” MSNJ is one of seven medical societies who partner with KAMMCO in the delivery of a physician-led health information exchange platform.

Kurt Scott, KAMMCO CEO said, “KAMMCO provides a critical service to make patients’ medical records available wherever they receive care.  It is a privilege that we can now deliver lab results, current medications and health histories for servicemen and women across the globe.  We are proud that MHS can query our HIEs and effectively use the clinical data they access.”

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About KAMMCO

KAMMCO is a provider-led medical professional liability insurer affiliated with the Kansas Medical Society. KAMMCO’s provider-led approach uniquely positions it to help physicians, other healthcare providers, integrated delivery networks, accountable care organizations, and others seeking to improve patient outcomes and adapt to new performance-based payment models through the use of data analytics and business intelligence tools. KAMMCO is now delivering health information exchange and analytics products and services in partnership with medical societies in six states beyond Kansas, including Georgia, South Carolina, Connecticut, New Jersey, Missouri, and Louisiana. For more information, visit www.KAMMCO.com.

About Kansas Health Information Network (KHIN)

KHIN’s mission is to improve healthcare quality, coordination and efficiency through the exchange of health information at the point of care utilizing a secure electronic network provided by a collaboration of healthcare organizations. KHIN is a provider-led 501(c)3. Its goals are to ensure providers, patients and communities have long-term access to cost effective, sustainable health information exchange aligned with costs distributed across a broad user base. It also encourages and removes barriers so communities and regions can focus on quality improvement, patient centered medical home and entrepreneurial strategies that effect local health outcomes. For more information, visit www.khinonline.org.

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Disclaimer

The content and accuracy of all information contained in this press release is the responsibility of the originating company or group. All information contained in this press release may be independently checked prior to any use or publication. Information and/or opinions expressed in this press release are not necessarily the views of Georgia Press Association or its affiliates.


Contact: Nora Sullivan

855-422-0051

Sam Williamson inducted in Georgia Auctioneers Hall of Fame

Sam Williamson, REALTOR, auctioneer, owner and CEO of Williamson Bros. Realty & Auction Co., Inc., in Athens, Georgia, was inducted into the Georgia Auctioneers Hall of Fame. This is an award of distinction determined by his peers and decided by the Georgia Auctioneers Association’s Hall of Fame Committee.
 
The awards ceremony took place during the association’s Summer Conference and awards banquet in Helen, Georgia, on Aug. 18, 2018, and came as a complete surprise to Williamson.
 
Williamson is a veteran auctioneer with over 23 years of experience. His expertise as a REALTOR & auctioneer is evident in his clear upbeat bid-calling, interspersed with entertaining commentary that keeps the audience alert. His events are effective for seller goals of obtaining top market value, as well as relaxing, informative and even fun for the crowd.
 
His professional career began at 21 after attending UGA. After teaching at a local middle school, Sam founded his Lock & Key business in Athens. It is now celebrating over 45 years in business. After becoming a REALTOR and auctioneer, he turned over operations of Clarke County Lock & Key to his brother, Allen, in 1995 to devote his knowledge and expertise full time to his real estate and auctioning career.
 
“Being inducted into the Georgia Auctioneers Hall of Fame is a very significant honor,” said Col. Chuck Beam, Georgia Auctioneers Association, Hall of Fame Committee Chair.
 
Williamson is a worthy recipient of this award. His additional achievements and certifications include: Certified Auctioneers Institute, CAI, Accredited Auctioneer of Real Estate, AARE, Graduate Personal Property Appraiser, GPPA, USPAP-certified (Uniform Standards of Professional Appraisal Practice) Expert Witness in the Courts, National Auctioneers Association, Georgia Auctioneers Association 2009, GA Bid Calling Champion, Athens Area Association of REALTORS Inaugural Hometown Hero – August, 2014, Athens Area Association of REALTORS Good Neighbor Award – 2013, Chairman of the Board 2003 – 2004, President 2002 – 2003, Georgia Auctioneers Association, served on board of directors total of 10 years.
 
Sam Williamson and his team can be contacted by phone at 706-202-2685 or visit his website at www.samwillauction.com for additional information.
 
About Georgia Auctioneers Association Hall of Fame Committee:
Georgia Auctioneers Association – Hall of Fame Committee reviews nominations made by GAA members and Georgia auctioneers for induction into the Hall of Fame. Many Hall of Fame members were past presidents and GAA members who dedicated time and energy to the auction industry in the state of Georgia. Contact us if you have a Hall of Fame member and our committee can provide information about the nomination process. Any new Hall of Fame members voted and agreed upon by our Hall of Fame Committee are introduced at our Summer Conference, which is generally in August.

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Disclaimer

The content and accuracy of all information contained in this press release is the responsibility of the originating company or group. All information contained in this press release may be independently checked prior to any use or publication. Information and/or opinions expressed in this press release are not necessarily the views of Georgia Press Association or its affiliates.


Contact: Marjorie Dykes, Ga. Manufacturing Alliance

770-338-0051

Fifth annual People of Manufacturing Awards presented at 2018 Georgia Manufacturing Summit

Atlanta, GA – The Georgia Manufacturing Summit hosted the 5th Annual People of Manufacturing Awards on October 10, 2018 at the Cobb Galleria. These awards honored the people that exhibit excellence on a daily basis and have gone above and beyond to better their organization’s manufacturing operations.

“The People of Manufacturing Awards are designed to bring exposure and recognition to these leaders that not only perform operational excellence, but are also involved in community service,” said Jason Moss, CEO of the Georgia Manufacturing Alliance. “We are excited to announce the winners for 2018.”

Team Operational Excellence

Adient in West Point, GA

The winner for Team Operational Excellence was the High Performance Team (HPT) at Adient in West Point. In 2017, with the full engagement of the hourly workforce, the plant achieved outstanding improvements in terms of safety, quality, delivery and cost. This plant has become the “go and see” plant for HPT activities, hosting plant managers and HPT leads from all other plants, including those outside our business unit. Early successes driven by HPT include record level TUMS (Outbound Trailer Utilization), record low scrap levels, greater than 95% average monthly closure rate on ELPA (electronic layered process audit) findings and a 50% decrease in absenteeism. The West Point plant is very active in the community, supporting the local food bank, a local nursing home, and Christmas and birthdays for 40 children in a local boys and girls home.

 

Team Safety Award

Scientific Games in Alpharetta, GA

The winner of the Team Safety Award was Scientific Games, a global gaming entertainment company with its largest lottery instant game manufacturing facility located in Alpharetta, GA.   Over the last three years, Scientific Games’ safety culture has made impressive advancements to reduce incidents and provide a safer manufacturing workplace. Evidence that the safety protocols have been effective at Scientific Games can be seen in the reduction of the number of recordable incident reports over the last two years, which has allowed the facility to fall within the American Society of Safety Engineers (ASSE) classification of “world class safety”.

 

Plant Manager Award

Jason Harden of Sunny Delight Beverages in Atlanta, GA

The winner for the Plant Manager Award was Jason Harden who serves as Site Operation Manager for Sunny Delight Beverages. Mr. Harden has 10 plus years of experience in manufacturing and maintenance systems with extensive knowledge in warehouse management. He is highly effective in team building and process improvements and recently served on the steering committee for the new Hot Fill Project Installation. In addition, his innovations facilitated the site to produce new configurations for Costco on demand. He has developed processes to rapidly cross train technicians to increase capacity and flexibility. Jason is active in his community with feeding the homeless and working with the Gateway Foundation and Hope House.

 

Front Line Supervisor Award

Elton Seton of KaMin in Sandersville, GA

The winner for Front Line Supervisor Award was Elton Seton who is the Production Supervisor at KaMin LLC. He is an experienced reliability engineer with a demonstrated history of working in the mining & metals-nonmetals industry. Skilled in AutoCAD, SolidWorks, Root Cause Analysis, Preventative Maintenance, Project Engineering, and Process Optimization, he is a strong operations professional with a Mechanical Engineering degree from Georgia Southern University. His first role at KaMin was a maintenance reliability engineer where he transformed the way KaMin processes machine reliability data across their three plants in GA. His community service includes building beds for needy families in Augusta, donating time to help the less fortunate, and servicing as a volunteer at every charitable event that the KaMin hosts.

Charlie Post, the CEO of TSI Solutions, was designated as the Awards Chairman and was responsible for appointing a panel of judges to select the winners. “The Georgia Manufacturing Alliance was established to promote, connect and educate manufacturers across the state,” said Mr. Post. “In support of that mission, the People of Manufacturing Awards was established to recognize the hard work, talents, and achievements of those individuals who have made an exceptional contribution to their company, their co-workers, and the Georgia manufacturing community.”

The Georgia Manufacturing Summit is produced by The Georgia Manufacturing Alliance (GMA). GMA is a membership-based industry organization founded in 2008 to support Georgia’s manufacturing community. GMA provides monthly plant tours, educational sessions, tradeshows, and unique networking opportunities designed to help make profitable business connections for its members. The Georgia Manufacturing Directory, Georgia Manufacturing Calendar and BuyFromGA.com are additional resources produced by GMA. To learn more about the organization, membership, and upcoming events, please call 770-338-0051 or visit their website http://www.GeorgiaManufacturingAlliance.com.

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Disclaimer

The content and accuracy of all information contained in this press release is the responsibility of the originating company or group. All information contained in this press release may be independently checked prior to any use or publication. Information and/or opinions expressed in this press release are not necessarily the views of Georgia Press Association or its affiliates.


Contact: Joy Crosby, Georgia Peanut Commission, 229-386-3690

Georgia Peanut Commission Hurricane Michael update: Impact on Georgia peanut industry

Growers and buying points assessing peanut crop

TIFTON, Ga – Hurricane Michael devastated Georgia agriculture during the most inopportune time; harvest season for many agricultural commodities. One of those commodities included peanuts, where 50 percent of the crop had been harvested. The remaining 50 percent is yet to be harvested as crop conditions deteriorate and damaged peanut buying points struggle to regain power to dry and grade the peanuts. Many unknowns remain about the devastation of the 2018 Georgia peanut crop.

The Georgia Peanut Commission has been meeting with federal and state officials discussing the current state of the peanut crop and impact on peanut infrastructure. Although it is too early to estimate the financial impact of the disaster, the GPC, working with state and federal officials, will determine as best possible the impact on growers and the industry’s infrastructure once the peanut crop is harvested.

“Hurricane Michael for peanut farmers is still an invisible problem in some locations, because we have peanuts in the ground that haven’t been dug yet and major infrastructure issues with buying points not being able to dry the peanuts or grade them,” says Don Koehler, GPC executive director.

According to the Oct. 15, 2018, crop condition index report from the U.S. Department of Agriculture National Agricultural Statistics Service, the crop condition index for Georgia peanuts dropped 12 percent since the hurricane came through.

“This is the largest decline in the crop condition index over the past years,” says Stanley Fletcher, professor of policy at the Center for Rural Prosperity and Innovation at Abraham Baldwin Agricultural College.

“It’s really too early to tell the exact loss the peanut industry may face,” says Scott Monfort, University of Georgia Extension agronomist for peanuts. “There are a lot of factors in play to determine the estimated loss due to delayed harvest in areas where farmers can’t get into the field or issues with infrastructure at peanut buying points where peanuts can’t be dried or graded without power.”

Farmers like Tim Burch of Baker County, Georgia, have not been able to harvest their entire crop. Burch has only been able to harvest 100 of his 600 acres of peanuts.

“This year’s near perfect crop has been nearly destroyed,” Burch says. “The infrastructure has been crippled and if buying points can’t operate, then farmers can’t get back in the field to harvest their crop. We need fair weather for a month so we can get in the remainder of the peanut crop.”

Decatur County farmer Andy Bell agrees with Burch and adds that it is difficult for farmers to get back in the field while they survey the severely injured peanut plants and wonder what type of yield remains below the ground.

“Many of the late planted peanuts are showing vine damage with loss of leaves on the vine and the remaining vine turning yellow,” Bell says. “Simply put, nutrient to the plant is not happening.”

Bell adds, many farmers had to make a choice prior to the hurricane and combine what they had dug under terrible circumstances including wet field conditions. He estimates an average loss of 1,000 pounds per acre in fields harvested prior to the hurricane. Bell says, it remains to be seen the loss following the hurricane from loose shelled kernels, debris in the field and peanut grade, which ultimately lowers the price the farmer receives.

“The process of getting our food from the farmer’s field into our consumers’ hands encompasses a variety of components that often go unnoticed,” says Georgia Agriculture Commissioner Gary W. Black. “Our farmers depend on these resources and infrastructures to be operational, so they can finish the job they started. We are actively working to assist our partners in repairing damages and regaining power, so the agricultural community can continue with the important task in hand.”

Long time buying point operator, Wesley Powell, owner of Dollar Brothers, Inc. in Decatur County, Georgia, is devastated by the damage.

“In my 30 years of operating Dollar Brothers, this is by far the worst I’ve ever seen and the only insurance claim I have filed in 30 years,” he says. “We had extensive damage to the peanut drying facility and peanut warehouse.”

Powell adds, farmers in his area are slowly getting back into the fields and delivering peanuts to his buying point. He is using generators at this time to dry and grade the peanuts as they are delivered, but it is a slow process compared to normal conditions.

The GPC encourages farmers to attend an upcoming Georgia Farm Service Agency Agriculture Disaster Assistance Meeting scheduled for Monday, Oct. 22 at 2:00 p.m. at the University of Georgia Tifton Campus Conference Center. Representatives from the USDA FSA, National Resources Conservation Service, Rural Development and Risk Management Agency will be available to provide updates and information regarding disaster programs available for farmers affected by Hurricane Michael.

The GPC plans to continue working with state and federal officials on disaster assistance for growers and industry. As more information becomes available, updates will be added to the GPC website at www.gapeanuts.com.

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Disclaimer

The content and accuracy of all information contained in this press release is the responsibility of the originating company or group. All information contained in this press release may be independently checked prior to any use or publication. Information and/or opinions expressed in this press release are not necessarily the views of Georgia Press Association or its affiliates.


Contact: Andy Lucas, Georgia Farm Bureau, 478-474-0679, ext. 5237

GFB Foundation collecting donations to aid hurricane victims

The Georgia Farm Bureau (GFB) Foundation for Agriculture is accepting tax-deductible monetary donations to help Hurricane Michael victims recover from the storm. All donations made to the GFB Foundation’s Hurricane Michael Relief Fund will be given to Georgians, farmers and ranchers who suffered losses to the storm.

Hurricane Michael hit farmers across South and Central Georgia hard damaging row crops, pecan orchards, vegetable crops, poultry houses, farm equipment and barns. Storm damage wasn’t limited to agriculture as Michael also left homes and automobiles damaged or destroyed, and people homeless.

“With Hurricane Michael making landfall last week, the damage Georgia has experienced will leave a lasting effect on our state. As we continue to assess damage, Georgia Farm Bureau is on the ground to help begin the recovery and rebuilding process for Georgians impacted by this tragedy,” GFB President Gerald Long said. “While debris can be cleared away and structures rebuilt, we must continue to pray for the farmers who have lost entire crops, poultry houses, farm equipment and livestock.”

University of Georgia pecan experts have made an early estimate that Hurricane Michael cost Georgia pecan growers 40 to 50 percent of this year’s crop. Many mature pecan trees were uprooted, which will cost growers future production as it takes seven to ten years for a new tree to produce nuts.

According to the Georgia Cotton Commission, cotton growers are reporting crop losses from 25 to 100 percent, depending on their location. Damage to Georgia’s peanut crop is hard to estimate this early due to the crop being in various stages of harvest when Michael hit. Power loss and structure damage to facilities where peanuts are bought and graded could also impact the crop.  The Georgia Department of Agriculture reports that 92 poultry houses were destroyed and vegetable crops in hard-hit areas are a total loss.

Donations can be made online via credit card by visiting gfb.ag/stormrelief. Donations made by check should be made out to the Georgia Farm Bureau Foundation for Agriculture and specified for the Hurricane Michael Relief Fund in the memo line. Checks should be mailed to:

Georgia Farm Bureau Foundation for Agriculture

Hurricane Michael Relief Fund

Attn: David Jolley

P.O. Box 7068

Macon, Ga. 31209

Donors who contribute $250 or more must receive an acknowledgement from the GFB Foundation in order to deduct the gift as a charitable donation on their federal income tax return. Donors should provide the GFB Foundation with a return address at the time donations are made to receive an acknowledgement. Please contact stormrelief@gfb.org with monetary donation questions or call 478-474-8411 ext. 5142.

About Georgia Farm Bureau

Founded in 1937, Georgia Farm Bureau is the largest general farm organization in Georgia. It works to connect consumers with agriculture and offers its members a wide variety of benefits, including insurance, but enrollment in any of the member benefits is optional and not a requirement for membership.

About GFB Foundation for Agriculture

The GFB Foundation for Agriculture funds activities to educate students and consumers about how farmers grow their food. It also funds scholarships for students pursuing careers in agriculture.

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Disclaimer

The content and accuracy of all information contained in this press release is the responsibility of the originating company or group. All information contained in this press release may be independently checked prior to any use or publication. Information and/or opinions expressed in this press release are not necessarily the views of Georgia Press Association or its affiliates.


Contact: Taylor Sills, Georgia Cotton Commission, 478-988-4235

 
Note: Photos of crop damage are available by contacting Sills.

Hurricane Michael devastates Georgia cotton crop

On the afternoon/night of October 10th and the early hours of October 11th, Hurricane Michael wreaked havoc on southwest, central, and parts of east Georgia and took an exceptional toll on Georgia’s agricultural economy, especially the cotton crop. Producers are reporting losses anywhere from 25% to a total loss, depending on location in the state, as well as structural and equipment losses and damage.

Official reports of losses will be coming in the coming weeks as University of Georgia Cooperative Extension Service personnel collect data. It is however, without question that losses will be in the hundreds of millions of dollars. Losses will extend well beyond the farm, as cotton gins, other agribusinesses, and rural communities will feel the ripples of Hurricane Michael’s aftermath for years to come.

Producers are encouraged to document damage and losses before, during, and after cleanup as well as financial records of cleanup, repair, etc., as assistance and crop insurance may take some time. Industry leadership has been in touch with officials in Washington and Atlanta describing the effects of the storm.

The Georgia Cotton Commission is a producer-funded organization located in Perry, Georgia. The Commission began in 1965. Georgia cotton producers pay an assessment enabling the Commission to invest in programs of research, promotion, and education on behalf of all cotton producers of Georgia. For more information about this and other topics please call 478-988-4235 or visit us on the web at www.georgiacottoncommission.org.

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Disclaimer

The content and accuracy of all information contained in this press release is the responsibility of the originating company or group. All information contained in this press release may be independently checked prior to any use or publication. Information and/or opinions expressed in this press release are not necessarily the views of Georgia Press Association or its affiliates.

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