FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
WEDNESDAY, AUG. 10, 2011
||Kim Decker, marketing specialist
NCDA&CS Marketing Division
Financial counseling available to poultry farmers
who lose contracts with Townsends
RALEIGH — Farmers who could lose production contracts with Townends are eligible for free financial counseling through a program launched by a consortium of agriculture groups and agencies.
The Agricultural Advancement Consortium has contracted with the nonprofit Vision Credit Education Inc. to provide financial counseling to the 171 farmers who raise chickens for Townsends. The poultry company’s parent, Omtron Ltd., recently announced plans to shut down processing plants in Mocksville and Siler City by October. Omtron is a U.S. company owned by Oleg Bakhmatyuk, a Ukrainian billionaire.
“This counseling will be provided on individual farms, helping growers with evaluations on topics such as loan restructuring, asset preservation and tax implications,” said Agriculture Commissioner Steve Troxler, a member of the consortium’s board of directors. “I want to emphasize that it’s entirely up to the farmer whether to ask for this free service.”
Growers also can receive counseling by calling Vision Credit’s toll-free hotline, 1-800-319-7254. Additional information will be available online at www.visioncredit.org.
N.C. Cooperative Extension has scheduled an information session for poultry farmers at 6:30 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 25, at the Carolina Stockyards in Siler City. Vision Credit also will be sharing information at that meeting.
The Agricultural Advancement Consortium brings together North Carolina’s leadership in agriculture, business and public policy to promote new ways to increase farm profitability. It is housed at the N.C. Rural Economic Development Center.
Note to editors: Agriculture Commissioner Steve Troxler, Rural Center President Billy Ray Hall and N.C. Farm Bureau President Larry Wooten, the consortium’s vice chair, are scheduled to discuss this project at the N.C. Board of Agriculture’s meeting at 1:30 p.m. today. The meeting will take place at the Hunt Horse Complex at the State Fairgrounds.