Who knew spending time with his father would lead Jacob Price to a career as a University of Georgia Extension agent?
As a young boy in Turner County, Price often accompanied his father, a state veterinarian, on farm visits. The two traveled from farm to farm across south Georgia, allowing Jacob to see the role Extension and agriculture played in those communities.
"I always thought it was really interesting what an Extension agent did," Price said.
Price's interests as a child have led to a successful career as an agricultural and natural resources Extension agent. He began in Camden County in 1999 and has worked in Lowndes County since 2006.
He enjoys his work and insists agriculture has a bigger impact in Lowndes County than most people might think.
"People see Valdosta â€” it's the biggest city around here; it's one of the biggest cities south of Macon. But it's got a lot of agriculture," Price said. "You go to south Lowndes, you've got a lot of vegetables and a lot of row crops. You've got a lot of variety. Of course, pecans are big, too."
According to the UGA Center for Agribusiness and Economic Development, Lowndes County generated $70.7 million in farm gate value in 2013 with $1.6 billion in agricultural output. More than 4,900 jobs in Lowndes were agricultural related.
Much of Lowndes' success in the field can be credited to Price's expertise. His hard work has produced gratifying results.
"Just helping people do the right thing in terms of pesticides and herbicides, instead of just taking a shotgun approach â€¦ I can say, 'This is what you've got. This is what you need to do.' That can save the farmers and Lowndes' citizens money, instead of trying products that may not work as well," Price said.
Price also writes a weekly column for the Valdosta Daily Times, highlighting current problems with ornamentals and turf. Price said he receives gratitude almost daily from area residents who appreciate the information he disseminates to the public.
Along with serving as a middle man for Lowndes' agricultural process, Price is also at the forefront of ground-breaking research. He was instrumental in generating interest within the south Georgia community about possibly growing Satsuma oranges, a citrus fruit grown mainly in Florida. Price helped organize an Extension meeting in Lowndes County in August 2013 that educated and informed local farmers about the crop and its potential in south Georgia.
Lowndes County Extension held another meeting last January. Price said 25 people in south Georgia planted the fruit this spring for a total of close to 50 acres.
Visit the UGA Extension Lowndes County website for more information about local programs.
Published June 16, 2014
Jacob G. Price
Agriculture & Natural Resources
"Just helping people do the right thing in terms of pesticides and herbicides, instead of just taking a shotgun approach â€¦ I can say, 'This is what you've got. This is what you need to do.' That can save the farmers and Lowndes' citizens money, instead of trying products that may not work as well."
- Jacob Price, Lowndes County ANR Agent