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Saturday, May 16, 2009

Agribusiness is SC's Largest Industry

The newest Ag Study has been published for South Carolina by the Palmetto Institute and again, Agribusiness, which includes forestry, is the largest industry in South Carolina. It’s pretty impressive to be number one two years in a row. The opportunities are so great for our agricultural industries; why is South Carolina only 26th in the nation in Ag Industry? Georgia is 10th and North Carolina is ranked 13th, in the study. What is so different between SC and our neighbors that they rank higher? What resources are they utilizing? What “next step” have they taken that SC should be taking?

Our different growers/ag resources/agribusinesses from across the state should band together as an agricultural community with the legislature, the growers and workers in each industry, and with the general public to move our industry forward. Having influence within our state government and making sure our voice is heard will be a strong step in the right direction.
Coordinated efforts shouldn’t stop there. We need to push for education innovation, energy development and marketing – all of which will benefit from each industry working together developing new products and training methods.

I would be remiss not to mention the urgent need for an immediate dedicated effort to coordinate agricultural economic development for South Carolina. Think in terms of complimentary industries and companies for our current farmers and agribusiness owners.

What are your thoughts on how SC can move forward on a national level?

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