News Filed Under Sweet Potatoes
HOUSTON, Miss. -- Sweet potato growers in Mississippi have been part of a growing industry in recent years, but they can do even better if they capitalize on export options.
That was the prevailing message at a recent meeting hosted by the Mississippi State University Extension Service at the Houston Civic Center Feb. 20.
STARKVILLE, Miss. -- Mississippi producers are growing 28,100 acres of sweet potatoes this year, but not one of those is below the northern third of the state.
What keeps growers in south Mississippi from planting the increasingly popular crop? Weevils are mostly to blame.
“Sweet potatoes grown in south Mississippi require more inputs to exclude weevils from fields and have stricter regulations as far as how and where sweet potatoes can be shipped and marketed,” said Stephen Meyers, sweet potato specialist with the Mississippi State University Extension Service.
PONTOTOC, Miss. -- Sweet potato producers, crop consultants, agricultural industry representatives and the general public will learn about ongoing Mississippi State University sweet potato research and outreach efforts at a field day Aug. 31.
The Mississippi State University Extension Service and Mississippi Agricultural and Forestry Experiment Station will host the event at the Pontotoc Ridge-Flatwoods Branch Experiment Station, located at 8320 Highway 15 South in Pontotoc.
STARKVILLE, Miss. -- The estimated $7.6 billion value of Mississippi agriculture increased by 1.8 percent in 2016, helping the industry retain its prominence in the state's overall economy.
STARKVILLE, Miss. -- Good seasons for cotton and corn should increase Mississippi's agronomic crops production value by 12.5 percent increase in 2016.
Brian Williams, agricultural economist with the Mississippi State University Extension Service, said most crops had a good year despite the extended drought.
"Fortunately, the drought came late in the season when most crops were past the critical stages," Williams said. "Total production was up, and the value on crops was also up, thanks to cotton and corn."
VARDAMAN, Miss. -- After two challenging years in Mississippi sweet potato fields, farmers are hoping for a problem-free harvest over the next few weeks.
Stephen Meyers, Extension sweet potato specialist based at the Mississippi State University Pontotoc Ridge-Flatwoods Branch Experiment Station, said growers are cautiously optimistic as harvest begins.
PONTOTOC, Miss. -- Mississippi State University faculty and specialists will update producers at a field day in Pontotoc Aug. 24 on recent sweet potato research.
Sweet potato producers, researchers, agriculture industry representatives and crop consultants can view research plots and variety trials at the MSU-Pontotoc Ridge-Flatwoods Branch Experiment Station during the program.
Personnel with the MSU Extension Service and the Mississippi Agricultural and Forestry Experiment Station will present information on weed management, crop fertility and sweet potato varieties.
STARKVILLE, Miss. -- Neither crop yields nor prices were particularly bad in 2015, but Mississippi’s estimated state agricultural production value still dropped to $7.2 billion, a 4.9 percent decrease from the previous year.
Brian Williams, an agricultural economist with the Mississippi State University Extension Service, said the decline in agricultural value has two causes.
VARDAMAN, Miss. -- Untimely dry conditions will likely hurt this year’s sweet potato crop in Mississippi, but increasing demand is keeping prices high enough for growers to remain optimistic.
Stephen Meyers, sweet potato specialist with the Mississippi State University Extension Service, said a wet spring delayed planting for one to two weeks. Dry fall conditions limited growing progress and will keep yields from reaching full potential.
STARKVILLE, Miss. -- Mississippi sweet potato growers will benefit from Mississippi State University’s work in a U.S.
PONTOTOC, Miss. -- Sweet potato producers, researchers, industry representatives and crop consultants are invited to attend a field day on Aug. 27.
The event will be at the Pontotoc Ridge-Flatwoods Branch Experiment Station, located at 8320 Highway 15 South. Specialists and researchers with the Mississippi State University Extension Service and the Mississippi Agricultural and Forestry Experiment Station will present the field day.
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Despite low prices for many commodities, the overall projected totals for Mississippi’s crop values should top $7 billion for the third straight year and essentially match the record set in 2013.
John Michael Riley, agricultural economist with the Mississippi State University Extension Service, said his preliminary estimate of 2014’s agricultural production values, excluding government payments, is over $7.7 billion.
VARDAMAN -- A dry September put a damper on Mississippi sweet potato production, but the rain in early October may help the crop remaining in the field.
Stephen Meyers, sweet potato specialist with the Mississippi State University Extension Service, said sweet potato fields received about an inch of rain Oct. 3.
“We’re optimistic that this rain will help size up the storage roots, but because of muddy conditions, producers will probably be out of the field for two days, and then resume harvest,” Meyers said.
PONTOTOC -- Sweet potato growers, crop consultants and other agricultural professionals can learn about current research and issues at a field day Aug. 20.
Researchers and specialists with Mississippi State University’s Extension Service and the Mississippi Agricultural and Forestry Experiment Station will host the event at the Pontotoc Ridge-Flatwoods Branch Experiment Station, located at 8320 Highway 15 South.
PITTSBORO – What will be the next innovative sweet potato product found on grocery shelves across the county? Perhaps something invented by students at Mississippi State University.
Gary Jackson, director of the MSU Extension Service, launched the Sweet Potato Innovation Challenge at the Sweet Potato Council’s annual meeting Jan. 10 in Calhoun County.
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Challenged to develop alternative uses for culled sweet potatoes, Mississippi State University students really thought outside the box.
Cosmetics, feminine hygiene products and deer attractants were among the student proposals in the first Sweet Potato Innovation Challenge at MSU. Phase one of the challenge took place during the fall semester, and student presentations in December included requests for research and development grants.
MISSISSIPPI STATE – A sweet potato production conference organized by Mississippi State University faculty and collaborators in other states won a national award on Nov. 10 for excellence in promoting multistate research.
MSU faculty Ramon Arancibia, Raja Reddy, Steve Meyers, Mark Shankle, Juan Silva, Jason Ward and Filip To are members of the National Sweetpotato Collaborators working group that planned the annual conference of sweet potato researchers.
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- In spite of recent rains, the state’s sweet potato growers have a lot to be excited about this harvest season.
“Growers set the majority of the crop back in late May and June under ideal conditions,” said Stephen Meyers, sweet potato specialist with the Mississippi State University Extension Service. “We had good root set, which means the number of roots per plant has been good.”
MISSISSIPPI STATE – A machine designed by a group of Mississippi State University researchers could help sweet potato farmers reduce skinning injury to potatoes and speed up harvest.
The undercutter prototype, made from off-the-shelf components, shows early potential to help lower harvest and post-harvest losses caused by skinning, said Jason Ward, assistant Extension professor in MSU’s Agriculture and Biological Engineering Department. Problems stemming from skin abrasions that happen during digging and handling account for 20 to 25 percent of storage losses, he said.