What happens to peanuts at a buying point?

Smithville Peanut Company, owned and operated by McCleskey Mills, is known for maintaining a relationship with the grower. With approximately 18,985 acres of peanuts planted in the area, the buying point has a lot of peanuts to handle and they are at a maximum. Growing up on the farm, I’ve seen peanuts being planted and picked but after they are taken out of the field on trailers what happens to them? The trailers take them to the buying point where they receive, weigh, clean, dry, inspect, grade and prepare peanuts for storage and shelling. Peanuts must be cleaned thoroughly because they come out of the field with a lot of foreign material such as sticks, grass, and dirt. When the peanuts enter the buying point the moisture level is approximately 15-20%. The drying process, which takes about 24 hours, drops it down to around 8% or lower. This prepares them for storage and shelling, which will then be transformed into candy, peanut butter and other tasty peanut treats.

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Israel Family Farm

The first stop of the 26th annual Georgia Peanut Tour is the Israel family farm. The family farms in Sumter and Lee County, Ga., and grow around 650 acres of peanuts. The Israel family primarily grow seed peanuts for their self and the state of Georgia to help with increasing new peanut varieties. The family is also one of the few farms left that also dry their own peanuts. Today on the tour Hal Israel explained how a peanut digger operates and showed the attendees plowed up peanuts and various models of peanut combines. Due to the rain the day before the Israel family could not show any actual digging or picking of peanuts.

View the 2012 Georgia Peanut Tour Photo Album

Welcome to the 26th Annual Georgia Peanut Tour

GA Peanut Tour logoOn behalf of the Georgia Peanut Tour Committee, which is comprised of individuals from the Georgia Peanut Commission, the USDA-ARS National Peanut Research Lab, and the University of Georgia College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences, we welcome you to the 26thannual Georgia Peanut Tour. The tour spotlights the southwest part of Georgia’s peanut production area. The Hot Topics Seminar on Tuesday will include a special focus on peanut disease management along with information on the 2012 peanut crop and more. This year’s tour hosts many exciting stops including on-farm harvest demonstrations and clinics, peanut processing facilities, and several special highlights which include Birdsong Peanuts in Sylvester, Tara Foods, and Thrush Aircraft both in Albany. Other stops will include JLA Global in Albany, the University of Georgia Stripling Irrigation Research Park and Plant Mitchell in Mitchell County, and the USDA/ARS Bolton Research Farm near Dawson. As you can tell, this year’s tour has our traditional type stops to see how peanuts move through the process from the field to the plate but we also have some new and unique stops to see how crop dusters are assembled and how a peanut by-product benefits citizens of Georgia. And you can always count on great food and “good ole southern hospitality”! Whether this is your first Georgia Peanut Tour or if you are a tour veteran, we trust this year will be a new experience that will make you want to come back again in 2013. All we ask is that you relax and be prepared to learn a lot, have a great time, and make some new friends.  We look forward to your visit and the opportunity to show you why with Georgia peanuts “Quality is Our Future”.

View the 2012 Georgia Peanut Photo Album