Agriculture Commissioner Steve Troxler sits down each week with Southern Farm Network’s Rhonda Garrison to discuss “Today’s Topic.”
The board of the Boll Weevil Eradication Foundation of North Carolina has set the 2015 monitoring assessment at $1 per acre of cotton, which is the same as last year. The fee supports the foundation’s efforts to monitor cotton acres for any signs of the boll weevil and to respond promptly with eradication treatments if necessary.
The boll weevil was eradicated from North Carolina in 1986, and cotton is now again one of the state’s top crops. In 2014, the state’s average yield was a record 1,049 pounds per acre.
Contractors will install and monitor traps from late summer until after harvest and frost. Because the focus of the program has shifted from eradication to monitoring, the number of traps in fields has decreased. So each trap is critical, and Commissioner Troxler encourages farmers to contact the foundation if traps are damaged or knocked down.
About 7,900 traps were placed and maintained in North Carolina last year. To allow for trapping and monitoring, cotton growers are required to certify cotton acreage with their local U.S. Farm Service Agency office by July 15. Farmers in 53 counties grew 452,607 certified acres of cotton last year. The top three cotton-growing counties were Halifax, Northampton and Martin.
Click on the audio player below to listen to Commissioner Troxler and Rhonda discuss the boll weevil assessment and why it’s a good investment. To learn more about monitoring for the boll weevil, click here.
[Audio:http://info.ncagr.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/Troxler_2-17.mp3|titles=Today’s Topic for Feb. 17]
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