2019 Bertie County Program Impact Report

Approved: January 17, 2020

I. Executive Summary

In 2019 the Bertie County Cooperative Extension Staff reached 78,919 people. Of this 13,982 were in face to face contacts and 64,937 were by telephone, email, radio, newsletters and social media. Program objectives as identified by our County Advisory Council and stakeholders included Plant Production Systems, Family and Consumer Sciences, 4-H Youth Development, Consumer Horticulture, Food Safety and Nutrition. In addition, $74,974 in grant, sponsorship and in-kind funding was awarded to this Center.

Agricultural Programs
Agriculture remains the number one industry in Bertie County with over $223.5 million in cash receipts (2017 NCDA Ag Statistics). Cooperative Extension personnel provided information and training to Bertie County growers and agricultural businesses through 18 on farm tests, 4 crop production meetings, forestry meeting, regional ag expo, 5 peanut maturity clinics, peanut leafspot advisories and numerous on farm visits. As a result, 467 clients increased knowledge, attitudes and /or skills through research-based information.

Private and commercial pesticide applicators are required to earn pesticide re-certification credits in order to maintain their applicator license. Bertie County Extension conducted 15 training opportunities in cooperation with NCDA&CS and Extension Specialists totaling 27 hours. A total of 535 private (farmers) and 67 commercial applicators received credits for re-certification. In addition, 96 applicators were educated on label updates and proper use of auxin technologies. Under the new worker protection standards, pesticide applicators and handlers working with any pesticide requiring a respirator must have medical clearance and complete a respirator fit test to be in compliance with federal law. The Bertie County Center held a respirator fit testing workshop in cooperation with N C Agromedicine Institute. A total of 92 pesticide applicators were fit tested and certified to wear a respirator when applying pesticides. In an effort to reduce pesticide waste on the farm and protect our natural resources, 6904 pounds of unwanted agricultural and household pesticide products were collected and disposed of with the assistance of NCDA&CS Pesticide Disposal Assistance Program.

Master Gardeners contributed 665 volunteer hours, within the County through educational and service projects, worth a total of $16,911.

Family and Consumer Sciences
Health issues can develop if bad habits such as poor eating and lack of physical activity are not corrected. The best way to address these habits is to promote healthy eating and encourage physical activities. While promoting these healthy habits we also teach food safety and savvy shopping. Outreach efforts in Bertie County were assisted by a $3050 Community Benefit Grant which was provided by the Vidant Bertie Hospital Development Council for the Family and Consumer Science Program. Family and Consumer Sciences efforts along with Community Partners have allowed various innovative programs including a Food Safety and Savvy Shopping class, slow cooking classes, the Bertie Make Tracks Walking Program, and the Senior Exercise Holiday Challenge to Maintain Don’t Gain for the Holidays weigh in program.

Expanded Food and Nutrition Education Program
A grant in the amount of $15,750 was awarded to continue the employment of an EFNEP Program Assistant to promote healthy eating, physical activity and chronic disease risk reduction to targeted audiences. EFNEP programming resulted in 561 youth and 93 adults increasing their knowledge of the importance of healthy eating and the benefits of physical activity.

Youth development remains a high priority for Bertie County. Reaching and leading youth to become better citizens and leaders through camp experiences and core programs (in-school and out of school) have proven to be successful. During the 2019 year all 13 youth attended residential camp ($420/youth) free of charge through grants and scholarships. There was a 125% increase in state level program participation (4-H Congress) and a 66% increase in Local, District, and State Competitions. In Short Term/ Special Interest programming (receiving 6+ hours of a particular subject matter there was a 1,500% increase. 78 volunteers (adult and youth) donated 708 hours to assist in the development of our youth population.

II. County Background

Bertie County is one of the oldest counties in North Carolina, which covers a total area of 741 square miles, with 699 square miles of land situated between the Chowan and Roanoke Rivers in Northeastern North Carolina. Bertie is a rural county with an estimated population of 19,224 (2017 Census estimate). This is a 9.5% decrease since 2010. Most residents (83%) live outside of the corporate limits of the eight towns located throughout the county. Median household income in 2017 was $33,022 and the percent of the population with income below the poverty level is 22%. The county population is 62% Black, 35% White, 2% Latino and 1% of other races.

Agriculture and forestry are major industries in the county generating approximately $223.6 and $10.6 million dollars, respectively, in sales during 2017 and 2016 respectively (last year data available). Field crop production contributed $61.2 million to the sales total primarily from cotton, corn, soybeans, peanut and clarey sage production. This is up $12.7 million or 26% from 2016, primarily due a more normal weather pattern and the lack of tropical systems that plagued the County in 2016. Livestock, primarily broiler production, added $154.4 million to the annual income. This continues to increase as farmers expand their poultry operations. Perdue Farms operates a poultry processing plant in Lewiston-Woodville and is the largest private employer providing jobs for some 2,200 individuals. The balance of farm income comes from government payments in the amount of $7.9 million dollars down $6.2 million or 44% in 2017 again as a result of a more normal weather pattern and stable commodity prices.

The Bertie County Center staff of the North Carolina Cooperative Extension Service identified critical needs and emerging issues that are currently impacting or will impact Bertie County residents in the near future. The Bertie County Advisory Council and various subject Program Committees contributed to this process. Educational programs were prioritized and state Extension objectives were selected to address the identified needs in the county. The objectives that emerged relative to the needs are: Plant Production Systems, Family and Consumer Sciences, 4-H Youth Development, Consumer Horticulture, Food safety and Nutrition. Bertie County Cooperative Extension Staff will provide the leadership in developing educational programs in addressing the above identified needs. Programs will utilize research based information and specialists from NC State and NC A&T Universities. Partnerships and collaborations with individuals, businesses, community groups, schools and government agencies will be conducted and cultivated to enhance programming efforts and results.

III. Objectives to Address the Cooperative Extension Long Range Plan

Our family and consumer sciences programs improve the well-being of individuals, families, and communities.

Value* Outcome Description
60Number of adults increasing their knowledge of community resources
6Number of parents and other caregivers of children increasing their knowledge of positive parenting practices (such as communication and discipline)
81Number of people gaining basic financial management knowledge and/or skills (such as; budgeting, record keeping, goal setting, writing goals, consumer decision-making)
* Note: Values may include numbers from multi-county efforts.
Value* Impact Description
57Number of people implementing basic financial management strategies (such as; developing a budget, keeping records, etc.)
* Note: Values may include numbers from multi-county efforts.

Our plant production programs improve production, profitability, and sustainability of the agriculture sector.

Value* Outcome Description
10Number of producers who gain skills or knowledge to increase production for local markets.
5Number of producers who improve local food marketing skills or knowledge.
462Number of pesticide applicators receiving continuing education credits
55Number of pesticide credit hours provided
3Number of Certified Crops Advisors receiving continuing education credits
467Number of crop (all plant systems) producers increasing/improving knowledge, attitudes, and/or skills as related to: 1. Best management production practices (cultural, nutrient, and genetics) 2. Pest/insect, disease, weed, wildlife management 3. Financial/Farm management tools and practices (business, marketing, government policy, human resources) 4. Alternative agriculture, bioenergy, and value-added enterprises
18Number of Extension initiated and controlled county demonstration test sites
8Number of Certified Crops Advisors credit hours provided
* Note: Values may include numbers from multi-county efforts.
Value* Impact Description
92Number of farmers, employees or family members adopting regular use of appropriate PPE following AgriSafe or Certified Safe Farm participation
7000Number of acres in conservation tillage or other Best Management Practice
* Note: Values may include numbers from multi-county efforts.

Our community development programs build strong and thriving communities.

Our 4-H youth development programs grow the skills young people need to succeed in life and career.

Value* Outcome Description
1Number of teachers trained in 4-H STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math) curriculum
566Number of youth (students) increasing knowledge in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math)
226Total number of female participants in STEM program
14Number of high school age youth (students) participating as members of 4-H clubs
112Number of children/youth who improved knowledge of local food and agricultural systems.
16Number of youth increasing/improving knowledge, attitudes, skills, and/or aspirations regarding leadership
248Number of youth demonstrating increased knowledge of natural resources and environmental issues
* Note: Values may include numbers from multi-county efforts.
Value* Impact Description
1Number of teachers using 4-H STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math) curriculum in their classrooms
12Number of youth (students) gaining career / employability skills
14Number of youth (students) gaining entrepreneurship skills
16Number of youth using effective life skills
4Number of youth willing to participate in conservation actions
658Number of youth increasing their physical activity
16Number of youth volunteers serving in new or expanded roles within Extension
4Number of youth volunteers serving in new or expanded roles beyond Extension, including community boards and task forces
2Number of youth assuming new/expanded leadership roles in the community
601Number of youth increasing their fruit and vegetable consumption
4Number of youth who grow food in school gardens.
* Note: Values may include numbers from multi-county efforts.

Our consumer horticulture programs teach families and communities about environmentally friendly methods for gardening and controlling pests.

Value* Outcome Description
127Number of individuals who gain knowledge or acquire skills related to vegetable/fruit gardening
* Note: Values may include numbers from multi-county efforts.
Value* Impact Description
68Number of participants who use extension-recommended best management practices in landscapes, turf, and gardens, including pest (insect, weed, disease, wildlife) and soil management
102Number of participants selecting appropriate landscape plants (adapted, drought tolerant, appropriate size, etc.)
2Number of participants adopting composting
* Note: Values may include numbers from multi-county efforts.

Our food safety and nutrition programs create a safer and more sustainable food supply and improve the health and nutrition of individuals, families, and our communities.

Value* Outcome Description
132Number of participants who increase their knowledge of safe home food handling, preservation, or preparation practices
463Number of food handlers who increase their knowledge and skills in safe food handling practices
* Note: Values may include numbers from multi-county efforts.
Value* Impact Description
102Number of participants developing food safety plans
370Number of adults increasing their fruit and vegetables consumption
422Number of participants increasing their physical activity
* Note: Values may include numbers from multi-county efforts.

IV. Number of Contacts Made by Extension

Type of ContactNumber
Face-to-face* 13,982
Non face-to-face** 64,937
Total by Extension staff in 2019 78,919
* Face-to-face contacts include contacts that Extension personnel make directly with individuals through one-on-one visits, meetings, and other activities where staff members work directly with individuals.
** Non face-to-face contacts include contacts that Extension personnel make indirectly with individuals by telephone, email, newsletters, news articles, radio, television, and other means.

V. Designated Grants Received by Extension

Type of GrantAmount
Contracts/Grants $31,380.00
Gifts/Donations $29,094.00
In-Kind Grants/Donations $6,500.00
United Way/Foundations $8,000.00
User Fees $0.00
Total $74,974.00

VI. Volunteer Involvement in Extension Programs

Number of Volunteers* Number of Volunteer Hours Known client contacts by volunteers Dollar Value at 25.98
4-H 78 708 50 $ 18,394.00
Advisory Leadership System 43 32 20 $ 831.00
EFNEP 66 182 1134 $ 4,728.00
Extension Master Gardener 126 665 194 $ 17,277.00
Other: Agriculture 65 134 81 $ 3,481.00
Total: 378 1721 1479 $ 44,712.00
* The number of volunteers reflects the overall number of volunteers for multiple events.

VII. Membership of Advisory Leadership System

Rodney Jack
Lauree Cherry
Ron Wesson
Vivian Saunders
Lori Speller
Tundra Woolard
Sheila Craig
Marcia Winston
Field Crops
John Feher
Dalton Williams
Clint Thompson
Danny Perry
Ron Swain
Brad Ward
David Leggett
Stanley Thompson
Wood Farless
Lymon Harrell
Herbie Tayloe
Master Gardener/Consumer Horticulture
Bill Tibbs
Mary Tibbs
Joan Dunston
Jim Davis
Marie Webb
Jean Richter
Gail Jernigan
Diana Johnson
Mike Hoggard
David Jennette
Mike Neal
Chuck Daniels
Allen Hoggard
Bill Jenkins
William Cowper
James Heckstall
County Advisory Council
Irma Robbins
Lauree Cherry
Blount Knowels
Joseph Baker
Carl Bond
Jean Richter
Gail Jernigan
Sid Copeland
Rodney Jack
Jacqueline Rowe-Higgs
Vivian Saunders
Jim Morris
Tundra Woolard
Sandra Simmons
Family and Consumder Science
Casey Owens
Donna Mizelle
Eleanor bond
Emily Jernigan
Ernestine Byrd
Irma Robbins
Joyner, Luann
Ronald Wesson
Sandra Simmons
Shelia Craig
Wanda Stallings

VIII. Staff Membership

Billy Barrow
Title: County Extension Director and Extension Agent, Agriculture
Phone: (252) 794-5317
Email: wbarrow@ncsu.edu
Brief Job Description: Currently I serve as the County Extension Director of the Bertie County Center. In addition, I am responsible for field crop work dealing with peanuts, forestry, sage and hemp.

Elizabeth Baker
Title: Extension Agent, Family and Consumer Sciences
Phone: (252) 794-6179
Email: Elizabeth_baker@ncsu.edu
Brief Job Description: Essential responsibilities for the position include planning, marketing, conducting and evaluating educational programs in Family and Consumer Sciences (FCS) for Bertie County. Emphasis of the Family and Consumer Sciences program is on nutrition, food safety, health and wellness, food preservation, chronic disease reduction, and volunteer management.

Candice Christian
Title: Area Specialized Agent, Consumer and Retail Food Safety
Phone: (919) 515-9148
Email: cadescha@ncsu.edu
Brief Job Description: The overall goal of the Area Specialized Agents (ASAs) in Consumer & Retail Food Safety is to provide North Carolinians with technical food safety information and to support Family and Consumer Sciences agents in delivering timely and evidence-based food safety education and information to stakeholders.

Marissa Cohen
Title: Area Specialized Agent, Agriculture - Animal Food Safety
Phone: (919) 515-5396
Email: marissa_herchler@ncsu.edu
Brief Job Description: Marissa is an Area Specialized Agent for animal food safety, with emphasis on the new Food Safety Modernization Act rules, as they apply to feed mills, pet food and ingredient facilities in North Carolina. Please contact Marissa with any animal food safety-related questions, or Preventive Controls for Animal Food (PCAF/PCQI) training inquiries.

Kathy Copeland
Title: EFNEP Educator, Extension Program Associate
Phone: (252) 794-5317
Email: kathy_copeland@ncsu.edu

Marti Day
Title: Area Specialized Agent, Agriculture - Dairy
Phone: (919) 542-8202
Email: marti_day@ncsu.edu
Brief Job Description: Responsible for educational programs for dairy farmers, youth with an interest in dairy projects and the general public with an interest in dairy foods and the dairy industry.

Erin Eure
Title: Area Specialized Agent, Agriculture - Commercial Fruits and Vegetables
Phone: (252) 357-1400
Email: erin_eure@ncsu.edu
Brief Job Description: Provides educational opportunities and technical support to commercial fruit and vegetable growers, agents, and industry in northeastern NC.

Steve Gabel
Title: Area Specialized Agent, Agriculture - Aquaculture
Phone: (252) 482-6585
Email: steve_gabel@ncsu.edu
Brief Job Description: Responsible for aquaculture educational programs for the NC NE extension district.

Guy Holley
Title: Extension Agent, 4-H Youth Development
Phone: (252) 794-5318
Email: gaholley@ncat.edu

Jarette Hurry
Title: Extension Agent, Agriculture - Field Crops, Horticulture and Forestry
Phone: (252) 794-5317
Email: jarette_hurry@ncsu.edu

Colby Lambert
Title: Area Specialized Agent, Forestry
Phone: (910) 814-6041
Email: colby_lambert@ncsu.edu
Brief Job Description: Provides educational opportunities and technical support to forest landowners, agents, and forest industry in eastern North Carolina.

Danny Lauderdale
Title: Area Specialized Agent, Ornamental Nursery and Greenhouse, Eastern Region
Phone: (252) 237-0111
Email: danny_lauderdale@ncsu.edu
Brief Job Description: Provides programming to commercial ornamental nursery and greenhouse producers in eastern North Carolina.

Lori McBryde
Title: Area 4-H Agent, East Region
Phone: (919) 989-5380
Email: lori_mcbryde@ncsu.edu
Brief Job Description: Provide support to the Eastern 34 Counties of the Northeast and Southeast Districts in 4-H Youth Development.

Sheila Powell
Title: County Extension Administrative Assistant
Phone: (252) 794-5317
Email: scpowell@ncsu.edu

Ashley Robbins
Title: Area Specialized Agent - Dairy
Phone: (919) 542-8203
Email: ashley_robbins@ncsu.edu
Brief Job Description: Marti Day and I are the Area Specialized Dairy Agents - the county-based arm of the Cooperative Extension Dairy Team. We are out here in the counties to help you set and reach your farm, family and business goals. We have collaborative expertise in the areas of Waste Management, Udder Health, Cow Comfort, Nutrition and Forage Management with specialties in (Ashley)Reproduction, Records Management, Animal Health and (Marti)Alternative Markets, Organic Dairy, Grazing Management, and On-farm Processing. We hope to provide comprehensive educational programs for our farmers, consumers and youth for every county across the state. We are here for you by phone, email or text and look forward to working with you!

Margaret Ross
Title: Area Specialized Agent, Agriculture - Poultry
Phone: (252) 670-8254
Email: margaret_ross@ncsu.edu
Brief Job Description: Working with commercial poultry producers to assist in writing nutrient management plans and conducting educational programming.

Chip Simmons
Title: Area Specialized Agent, Agriculture - Food Safety
Phone: (919) 414-5632
Email: odsimmon@ncsu.edu

Scott Tilley
Title: Area Specialized Agent, Agriculture - Grain
Phone: (252) 793-4428
Email: scott_tilley@ncsu.edu

Mitch Woodward
Title: Area Specialized Agent, Watersheds and Water Quality
Phone: (919) 414-3873
Email: mdwoodwa@ncsu.edu
Brief Job Description: NC Cooperative Extension's Goals include: - NC's natural resources and environmental quality will be protected, conserved and enhanced. - NC will have profitable, environmentally sustainable plant, animal and food systems. Protecting our environmental resources, particularly drinking water quality, is a top priority in NC. NC Cooperative Extension is a leader in teaching, researching, and accelerating the adoption of effective water quality protection practices.

IX. Contact Information

Bertie County Center
104 Lancaster Avenue
Windsor, NC 27983

Phone: (252) 794-5317
URL: http://bertie.ces.ncsu.edu