Thank a farmer

by | Nov 20, 2009

North Carolina is the nation's top sweet potato grower.

North Carolina is the nation's top sweet potato producer.

Thanksgiving is next week, and I always look forward to spending the holiday with my family (especially now that I have grandchildren to spoil). I’m very thankful for my family and the joy they bring me.

Another thing I’m thankful for is the role North Carolina farmers play in putting food on our tables. Our state leads the country in the production of sweet potatoes, we are second in the production of hogs and turkeys, and third in cucumbers for pickling. We also rank high in the production of eggs, apples and pecans. (You can see the rankings here.)

When you sit down for your Thanksgiving meal, chances are pretty good that you’ll be enjoying some food produced right here in the state.  Statistics say that one out of every seven turkeys cooked at Thanksgiving will come from North Carolina. We also supply enough pork products for one out of every four families in America, and one out of every 13 eggs comes from North Carolina.

As consumers, we all have a lot to be thankful for when it comes to our agricultural community. We are fortunate to live in an agriculture-rich state that produces so many different commodities. Our farmers also contribute mightily to our state’s $70 billion agribusiness industry, which plays a critical role in our state’s economy.

Gov. Bev Perdue has proclaimed today as “Thank a Farmer Day” in North Carolina. A great way to thank our farmers is to support them by shopping at farmers markets or looking for the Got to Be NC logo at your local grocery store. It’s something we should do not only during the holiday season, but year-round.

Here’s hoping you have a safe and happy Thanksgiving!