Regional Report Eastern October 2012
Casting kernels before swine
While drought has decimated the Midwest’s corn crop, the U.S. Department of Agriculture predicts North Carolina’s yield will rise nearly 36% per acre compared with last year. That’s good for corn farmers in the region, where most of the state’s crop is grown, because prices have hit a historic high. But it’s bad for the state, the nation’s second-largest producer of hogs, as more expensive corn means more expensive feed.
RAEFORD — A federal jury found House of Raeford Farms guilty on 10 counts of knowingly violating the Clean Water Act by dumping untreated wastewater into the municipal treatment plant. Prosecutors say the Rose Hill-based poultry processor released wastewater contaminated with blood, grease and body parts from slaughtered turkeys. It was acquitted on four similar counts.
WILMINGTON — Gov. Beverly Perdue appointed state Rep. Danny McComas, a Republican, chairman of the N.C. Ports Authority. McComas, who is not seeking re-election, was chairman of the House commerce committee and is president of Wilmington-based MCO Transport, a trucking and logistics company.
ROCKY MOUNT — Pharmaceutical maker Hospira will add 200 workers to the 2,400 at its production plant here and invest $85 million within three years. The Lake Forest, Ill.-based company manufactures generic versions of injectable medicines and could invest as much as $270 million over 10 years. Average annual wage will be $51,780, higher than the Nash County average of $34,112.
LELAND — Efficient Energy America raised $3.3 million through a $6.4 million preferred-share offering. It plans to use the proceeds to further research and development and improve marketing and sales. It helps fast-food and casual-dining restaurants manage energy use.