Peanut association has several functions

Published 9:12 am Wednesday, May 18, 2011

by Dell Cotton

As I mentioned in my last article, our office here in Franklin serves two organizations — the Peanut Growers Cooperative Marketing and Virginia Peanut Growers associations.

I have served since 2003 as the executive secretary of the Virginia Peanut Growers Association, having taken over with the retirement of Russell Schools, who served in the same capacity for many years. The association office was in Capron until 2003.

The Virginia Peanut Growers Association is the promotion and research arm for peanut farmers. The association is funded by the Virginia Peanut Board, which collects funds from an excise tax levied on each pound of peanuts produced in the state.

There actually is a peanut growers’ association in each state that grows significant acreage of peanuts — North and South Carolina, Georgia, Florida, Alabama, Mississippi, Texas, Oklahoma, New Mexico and, of course, our own.

Within each state, these associations have a lot of functions, including promotion with radio and print media, attending events and shows where a presence helps educate the public, and coordinating research with typically the state’s land grant university and any others with agricultural researchers.

These organizations also offer information. There is a tremendous amount of information available on peanuts when it comes to nutrition, allergies, production, recipes and more.

In the local growing region, many years ago, it was agreed to form a joint Virginia-Carolina Peanut Promotion office that handles the distribution of promotional materials and coordinates promotional efforts on behalf of Virginia and North and South Carolina.

The website — — is maintained and happens to be the first peanut-related website to be built years ago. The website offers readers all sorts of information and lists the retailers of our famous gourmet peanuts, which this region and our particular part of Virginia are known for.

The website and office are promoters of in-shell peanuts, which are also a part of the history of our region. Finally, the office at VC Peanut Promotions sends out an incredible number of brochures, pamphlets, teacher kits and other information on a yearly basis. The teacher kits for younger grades are great and can either be downloaded from the website or mailed.

If you want to learn more about peanuts, give the website a visit. If you need brochures or kits to use with students, your children, or any group, feel free to call.