Industry News For December 2019

Book Chronicles Oliver Family Saga In The Mississippi Delta

james oliver
James Allen Oliver, the author of “The Oliver Family, Mississippi Delta Legacy,” is a life-long Mississippi Delta native.  He and his wife, Patricia Ruggeri Oliver, now live in Hernando, Mississippi.
This publication traces the struggles of five generations of Olivers, from the late 1800s to the present in the Mississippi Delta.

In the 1870s, James Samuel Oliver arrived in the Mississippi Delta by swimming across the Mississippi River — with a fresh bullet wound in his leg. He later journeyed deep into the swampy wilderness known as the Mississippi Delta. Oliver cleared timber and carved a plantation home near Indianola, Mississippi.

More than 140 years later, his great grandson, James Allen Oliver, traces the Oliver family history from the late 1800s until today in his book, “The Oliver Family, Mississippi Delta Legacy.” Oliver based his book on many years of research in county courthouses, libraries, graveyards and several generations of oral stories.

“My family members and friends represent many other Mississippi Delta families that helped shape the region for five generations. And the Delta helped shape us,” Oliver says.

Newspaper clippings and courthouse records substantiate many of the hardships the Olivers endured and overcame.

“The mortar bonding the bricks are the many family stories that have been passed down orally generation to generation since the late 1800s,” he says. “I felt I needed to put the family lore on paper before these stories are lost like the wild frontier the Delta once was.”

This unique Delta book also explores the major influence and contributions of immigrants to the region, including the Irish and the Italians, as well as race relations between blacks and whites through the generations. The Oliver family was intertwined with the Williams family, a black family, since James Samuel first stalked the Delta.

James Allen Oliver, whose mother was a Faulkner, is a life-long Mississippi Delta native, who grew up at Goose Hollow southwest of Indianola. After a successful career in the global crop protection business, he developed and sold several off-patent product companies. He and his wife, Patricia Ruggeri Oliver, now live in Hernando, Mississippi, and own a number of Mississippi Delta farms, including some land that had been cleared by his great grandfather James Samuel almost 150 years ago.

Paintings by Carol Heathman Polasini and original photographs illustrate the book, which will be released the first week of December.

For more information, visit

Use Of Chlorpyrifos In California Will End In 2020

The California Environmental Protection Agency says virtually all uses of the pesticide chlorpyrifos in California will end next year.

This announcement follows an agreement between the Department of Pesticide Regulation and pesticide manufacturers to withdraw their products.

Earlier this year, DPR announced it was acting to ban use of chlorpyrifos by canceling the pesticide’s product registrations.

Under the settlement, the companies agreed to the following:

• All sales of chlorpyrifos products to growers in California will end Feb. 6, 2020.

• Growers will no longer be allowed to possess or use chlorpyrifos products in California after Dec. 31, 2020.

• Until then, all uses must comply with existing restrictions, including a ban on aerial spraying, quarter-mile buffer zones and limiting use to crop-pest combinations that lack alternatives. DPR will support aggressive enforcement of these restrictions.

To ensure consistency for growers and for enforcement purposes, DPR is applying the terms and deadlines in the settlements to seven other companies that are not part of the settlement agreement but are subject to DPR’s cancellation orders.

A few products that apply chlorpyrifos in granular form, representing less than 1% of agricultural use of chlorpyrifos, will be allowed to remain on the market.

Cargill Cotton Moving Back To Downtown Memphis

Cargill Cotton has relocated to downtown Memphis, Tennessee. The business employs approximately 75 employees at the current headquarters in Cordova and will be moving downtown to One Commerce, 40 S. Main St.

“Cargill Cotton is excited to be a part of the revitalization of downtown Memphis with the relocation of its global headquarters to One Commerce Square,” says William Barksdale, managing director, Cargill Cotton.

Cargill is partnering with One Commerce Square Memphis Realty LP on the remodel and plans to be in the space by spring 2020.

Cargill has been in the Memphis area for more than 40 years, serving the region and its residents both as an employer and through community giving and volunteer programs. Currently, there are 150 Cargill employees in the greater Memphis area, working at five facilities, including Cargill Cotton.

Over the past 10 years, Cargill has also donated more than $730,000 in financial support to a variety of non-profits in Memphis and surrounding communities focused on nutrition, food security, sustainability and building connected communities.

Dr. Andy Jordan Honored For Outstanding Leadership

Dr. Andrew Jordan
Dr. Andrew Jordan
Field to Market: The Alliance for Sustainable Agriculture honored the recipients of the 2019 Sustainability Leadership Awards on the eve of the fifth annual Sustainable Agriculture Summit.

Presented as the capstone of the alliance’s fall meeting, these awards are given to farmers, organizations and individuals who have demonstrated outstanding leadership through their efforts to advance continuous improvement in the sustainability of U.S. commodity crop production.

For the first time in 2019, the alliance expanded its awards program to also celebrate the critical role that trusted advisers — like certified crop advisers, conservation districts specialists, Extension agents, Natural Resource Conservation Service field staff and retail agronomists — play in supporting farmers’ journeys of continuous improvement.

Recognizing outstanding leadership in supporting farmers in their pursuit of continuous improvement, the inaugural Trusted Adviser of the Year Award was awarded to Dr. Andrew Jordan, consultant and owner of Jordan Associates.

Widely recognized within the cotton industry as a pioneering sustainability advocate, Jordan dedicated a 30-year tenure at the National Cotton Council to enabling cotton producers to adopt new technologies and implement more sustainable practices on their farms.

Translating this expertise, he established himself as a trusted adviser not only to farmers but to the wider industry in 2007, championing the importance of documenting and demonstrating continuous improvement in the sustainability of U.S. cotton.

Most recently, Jordan served as a leading adviser on the newly released U.S. Cotton Trust Protocol, which leverages Field to Market’s suite of sustainability metrics to enable cotton farmers across the country to deliver sustainable outcomes and contribute to the broader industry’s sustainability story.

Jordan has also contributed significant volunteer efforts overseas to design small-scale community water systems for developing countries.

“Congratulations to our awardees.We know they will continue to be leaders in building an agriculture system that supports resilient ecosystems and enhances farmer livelihoods,” says Rod Snyder, president of Field to Market.

Georgia Cotton Commission Announces King Cotton Awards

2019 UGA king cotton awards
Stephanie Hollifield, Brooks County Extension Coordinator; Richey Seaton, Executive Director of Georgia Cotton Commission; and Ty Torrance, Grady County ANR agent — photo courtesy Georgia Cotton Commission
The Georgia Cotton Commission recently recognized two University of Georgia Cooperative Extension professionals for their work in the cotton industry.

Stephanie Hollifield, Brooks County Extension coordinator, was presented this year’s Senior King Cotton Award. Ty Torrance, Grady County agricultural and natural resources agent, was presented the Allen B. Fulford Award. Both were recognized at the Georgia Association of County Agricultural Agents annual meeting in Dublin, Georgia.

Hollifield, who also serves as an agriculture and natural resources agent, hosts producer education programs regarding agronomics and defoliation and conducts county research on cotton. She focuses her research trials on issues important to local growers, including areolate mildew, planter downforce and defoliation tankmixes.

Torrance joined Extension in 2015 and previously served producers in Decatur, Schley and Marion counties. He serves as a member of the Georgia Cotton Commission’s Research Advisory Committee, which analyzes and makes recommendations on research programs funded by the commission.

He also participates in the UGA Cotton Team’s on-farm variety trials, a program designed to inform producers on yield and fiber quality data from the numerous commercial cotton varieties available to farmers statewide.

This is the 19th year the Georgia Cotton Commission has sponsored the King Cotton Awards to recognize the outstanding contributions of county agents to Georgia cotton producers.

The Senior Award is for agents with 10 or more years of experience, while the Junior Award, named the Allen B. Fulford Award, is for agents with fewer than 10 years of service.

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