A Visit With Southeastern Farmer of the Year Danny Kornegay
-- Customer Story
Danny Kornegay isn’t afraid to try new things.
Raising hogs, tobacco, sweet potatoes, cotton, watermelons, peanuts, soybeans corn and more, his 5,500-acre operation is about as diversified as a farm can realistically be. Danny has even partnered with four other producers to build their own cotton gin and a warehouse 26 years ago. Yet, this year he’s made a new addition—asparagus.
Danny, 62, concedes he is no expert on asparagus. Fortunately, he and his family—his wife, Susie; son, Dan; and daughter, Kim Kornegay-LeQuire—have plenty of experience managing different operations and trying new things at their farm, Kornegay Family Farms & Produce in Princeton, North Carolina.
The operation’s longtime success led to Danny being named the Swisher Sweets/Sunbelt Expo Southeastern Farmer of the Year for 2015 at the Sunbelt Ag Expo in Moultrie, Ga.
The family has weathered downturns in both the cotton and tobacco markets, yet both continue to provide good income. “The future for tobacco with regulations and demand doesn’t make it the most stable industry. We think there will continue to be a strong demand for healthy American-grown food like sweet potatoes and vegetables.”
Both Dan and Kim give credit to their dad for planning a farm for the future and working to make it all come to fruition.
“I think Dad has just had such great vision,” says Kim, who oversees the farm’s payroll, human resources and food safety program, among other duties. “He has not tried to be the biggest at everything, but always had a plan for steady and managed growth. And in the past 10 years, my brother has had a big role in that.”
Among other prizes for being named Farmer of the Year, Danny received a year’s use of a Massey Ferguson® 8737 tractor. He says about the MF8737 that “it is well built. The Dyna-VT™ transmission is very nice because you don’t have to change gears … and the comfortable ride may be the best feature.”For more on the Kornegay family and their operation, visit https://www.myfarmlife.com/features/farm-diversification-danny-kornegay/.