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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
THURSDAY, FEB. 4, 2010

CONTACT:

Peter Thornton, assistant director for international marketing
NCDA&CS Marketing Division

(919) 733-7887

NCDA&CS gives Exporter of the Year Award to U.S. Tobacco Cooperative

RALEIGH — The N.C. Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services has named U.S. Tobacco Cooperative its 2010 Exporter of the Year.

Agriculture Commissioner Steve Troxler presented the award to company officials during the Ag Development Forum on Feb. 4. The department created the award to honor agriculture businesses that successfully export N.C. agricultural products around the world.

U.S. Tobacco board member Jimmy Crews and Mike Lynch, senior vice president of global sales and marketing, accepted the award for the company. Lynch was specifically cited for the work he has done to expand international markets for North Carolina tobacco.

In presenting the award, Troxler cited the company’s success at increasing sales of North Carolina tobacco to other countries, particularly China, which has entered into contracts to purchase a total of 52 million pounds from North Carolina’s 2009 crop.

“U.S. Tobacco has been instrumental in helping build a stronger relationship between North Carolina and China’s tobacco company,” Troxler said. “Mike Lynch and the staff of the cooperative recognize the growing importance of international markets and will continue to expand opportunities for our growers.”

Formed in 1946 as Flue Cured Stabilization Cooperative, Raleigh-based USTC served as administrator of the federal tobacco program. When the program ended after the 2004 growing season, the cooperative began evolving into a sales, marketing, processing and manufacturing company. Its plant in Timberlake processes and markets 100 percent U.S. tobacco strips, cut-rag blends, expanded stems and cigarettes worldwide.

The cooperative’s 1,000 members are flue-cured tobacco growers in North Carolina, Virginia, South Carolina, Georgia and Florida.

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NCDA&CS Public Affairs Division, Brian Long, Director
Mailing Address:1001 Mail Service Center, Raleigh NC 27699-1001
Physical Address: 2 West Edenton Street, Raleigh NC 27601
Phone: (919) 733-4216; FAX: (919) 733-5047

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Steve Troxler, Commissioner of Agriculture

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