FEBRUARY 21, 2014--ATLANTA — John Harrell, a sixth-generation farmer from Whigham, Ga., has been elected as the 2014 chairman of the 11-member National Peanut Board. Harrell’s term runs through Dec. 31, 2014.
In assuming leadership of National Peanut Board, Harrell will preside over quarterly meetings and is an ex-officio member of all Board committees. The farmer-funded National Peanut Board is the national research, promotion and education check-off program for the peanut industry.
“I am proud to serve in this tremendous time of growth in the peanut industry,” said Harrell. “One of the Board’s priorities this year is launching the new Perfectly Powerful Peanut campaign—a brand that the entire industry can get behind and support. This message highlights the peanut’s nutritional benefits—that peanuts have more protein than any other nut and we’ve found nutrition and wellness are what consumers are looking for.”
Additionally, Harrell plans to continue the Board’s focus on funding production research as a valuable way to maintain efficiency and sustainability for growers.
Harrell began farming in 1975 growing peanuts and corn, later adding cotton. Today, he, his wife Deena and son Douglas, along with his brother, Tommy Harrell, own and operate the family farm and land north of Whigham. Harrell attended Abraham Baldwin Agricultural College in Tifton, Ga. after graduating from Whigham High School.
Along with the National Peanut Board, Harrell is involved in several other peanut and agricultural groups. He serves on the Georgia Peanut Commission Advisory Board and on the American Peanut Council Export Board. For his community, Harrell served as Grady County Commissioner from 1992 to 1996, and currently is the Grady County Supervisor for the Georgia Soil and Water Commission. Harrell also serves on the Grady County Farm Bureau Board of Directors, chairman of Georgia Farm Bureau Commodity Advisory Committee for Peanuts, Grady County Extension Service Agricultural Advisory Committee and U.S. Senator Johnny Isakson’s Agricultural Advisory Committee and is a member of the Grady County Chamber of Commerce and Whigham Community Club.
Andy Bell of Climax, Ga., serves as the alternate Georgia representative on the National Peanut Board.