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Agribusiness

Sweet potato producer Penick acquired by Alexander Farms

VARDAMAN – Two powerhouse sweet potato growers have combined, with Alexander Farms finalizing the purchase of several Penick Produce businesses last week. Investment banking company Legacy Capital said the transaction was signed May 22, with Penick Produce Co., Penick Business, Penick L.P., and significant land assets sold to local sweet potato operator Alexander Farms for an undisclosed figure. “My father-in-law, ...

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EPA chief defends agency approach

By JACK WEATHERLY After withholding the name of the keynote speaker for the Delta Council’s annual meeting last Friday, the group’s president revealed the day before that Environmental Protection Agency Director Scott Pruitt was to be the speaker. The council initially said that it was going to honor the White House request to keep the speaker’s identity secret. But the ...

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Sanderson earnings fall in second quarter

By JACK WEATHERLY Sanderson Farms Inc. reports net income of $41.9 million, or $1.84 per share, for its second fiscal quarter, which ended April 30, compared with net income of $67 million, or $2.95 per share, for the second quarter of fiscal 2017. The release in premarket trading on May 24 drove Sanderson shares on the NasdaqGS market down as ...

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SECOND UPDATE: EPA chief defends agency approach

By JACK WEATHERLY After withholding the name of the keynote speaker for the Delta Council’s annual meeting last Friday, the group’s president revealed the day before that Environmental Protection Agency Director Scott Pruitt was to be the speaker. The council initially said that it was going to honor the White House request to keep the speaker’s identity secret. But the ...

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Chicken company plans $20M in upgrades to Mississippi plant

A chicken company plans $20 million in upgrades to a central Mississippi plant. The Vicksburg Post reports that Tyson Foods discussed its plans for its Bovina plant recently with Warren County supervisors. The county is considering tax abatements worth $2.2 million for work already done at the plant. Tyson’s Charlie Terrell says the company is upgrading hot water for two manufacturing ...

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National forests brace for next pine beetle onslaught

By JACK WEATHERLY Early signs are that national forests in Mississippi will face a second consecutive year of a severe Southern pine beetle outbreak, threatening to damage tens of thousands of acres, according to the National Forest Service. The national forests were hit harder last year than private stands. Approximately 23,000 acres were affected in the national forests, according to ...

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Soybean crop starting slow across Mississippi

STARKVILLE – At about 2.2 million acres, soybeans are easily the state’s biggest row crop with a flexible planting window that puts them in the clean-up position when farmers cannot plant other crops on time. Trent Irby, soybean specialist with the Mississippi State University Extension Service, said the crop was about 60 percent planted by early May. This amount was ...

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MIKE ESPY — Ag tariffs: We should be careful what we ask for

Military wars are dangerous, expensive, and as we have seen in the decades old conflict in Afghanistan- can be quite lengthy, but in the end America will win. However, when the conflict concerns international trade, the same cannot be said, because in trade wars the outcome cannot be confidently predicted. As a unified nation, the force of our military, more ...

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Threat and reality of tariffs not yet a factor in Mississippi

By JACK WEATHERLY The United States and China are in a standoff on agricultural trade, with the communist nation threatening to impose a 25 percent tariff on U.S. soybeans and other crops. “I think there is some hope that [the sides in] this standoff will back down,” said Dr. Keith Coble, head of the agricultural economics department at Mississippi State ...

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Cal-Maine sales increase; income boosted by tax cut

By JACK WEATHERLY Cal-Maine Foods, Inc. reported net income of  $96.3 million, or $1.99 per share, for the third quarter of fiscal 2018,  compared with $4.1 million, or nine cents per share, for the year  earlier period, thanks in part to a $35 million, or 72 cents per share, boost from the federal Tax Cuts and Jobs Act. Earnings for ...

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