Sweetpotato Survey Summary
Sweetpotato growers in North Carolina continue to express interest in participating in conservation programs. Surveys of sweetpotato growers conducted in 2006 and 2007 show that growers have limited knowledge about financial assistance to cover the cost of adopting environmentally sound practices. However the surveys also show that growers have a keen interest in learning more about how to make use of those programs to support new practices on their farms.
According to the survey results growers aware of the financial assistance available increased from 22% in 2006 to 33% in 2007. At the same time the number of growers interested in learning more about how to use the programs increased from 85% to 96% in 2007.
The surveys were conducted in conjunction with a project organized by the Center for Agricultural Partnerships (CAP) (www.agcenter.org) in cooperation with the North Carolina Sweetpotato Commission (NCSC), North Carolina State University and Cooperative Extensions Service (NCSU & CES), and Natural Resource Conservation Service staff. In addition to assessing grower knowledge and interest the project also established a new integrated pest management cost share practice for sweetpotato growers based on the work of Dr. George Kennedy.
Based on grower interest in the financial assistance opportunities CAP, NCSC and NCSU are hoping to develop a strong outreach, education and technical assistance program so that NC producers can make use of this important new opportunity.
(For complete survey results contact CAP at 828-285-9340).