Peanuts in Agriculture
Until two thousand and two the United States government had a quota system on how many acres could be planted in peanuts. Since that program ended, South Carolina farmers have gone from 10,000 acres to over eighty-thousand acres today. Peanuts grow better here than soybeans and are more profitable, and, of course they are important to plant in rotation with cotton as they have the ability to fix atmospheric nitrogen, replenishing soils depleted by the heavy feeding cotton. Over 400 South Carolina farmers now incorporate peanuts into their cropping systems and we have twelve buying points where farmers take their peanuts, have them graded and sold. In the United States as a whole, people eat 7.6 six pounds of peanuts a year – mostly peanut butter, but I bet here boiled peanuts are pretty high on the consumption chart.