As we approach the end of 2016, we look back on a volatile year in agriculture in our state. As is often the case, some commodities had a good year, while others experienced stress. Carolina Farm Credit is fortunate to have a diverse portfolio of loans, which enables us to work with borrowers in both the good and bad times. We continue to reach out to our neighbors who were affected by flooding after Hurricane Matthew. Our association has joined with the other Farm Credit organizations in the state to commit resources to help with disaster relief. Our hearts go out to the folks who lost their homes and possessions.
We have enjoyed celebrating our 100th anniversary during 2016 and are positioned to be a source of reliable, consistent credit and financial services for the next 100 years. Carolina Farm Credit is a strong, successful organization thanks to three primary reasons: Our members, our staff and our mission. First, we can only be successful if our members are. We are blessed to work with member/borrowers who work hard and appreciate the value of relationships. Secondly, we have a dedicated staff that has a passion to support agriculture and want their borrowers to be successful. Finally, Carolina Farm Credit has a mission to be there for all of agriculture, both in the good and bad times. We are able to accomplish this by operating as a cooperative – guided by a locally elected board of directors that are members/borrowers who know and understand agriculture. We must operate in an efficient, fiscally responsible manner, but can manage our association in a way that positions you for success, unlike other financial institutions that manage around their stock price traded on Wall Street. You are to be congratulated for making Carolina Farm Credit what it is today!
Our director election was completed in October. Clark Newlin and Tommy Porter were re-elected to new five-year terms. These men do an excellent job representing you on the board and we look forward to working with them to ensure our association is successful and positioned to support agriculture and our rural communities into the future. The Nominating Committee was also elected. Thank you to all those who ran for election. The election process is an integral part of how we operate as a cooperative – local control by people who are part of agriculture.
Carolina Farm Credit is experiencing another good year. Earnings are strong and you can expect it to be reflected in your patronage refund in the spring. We are beginning to see some credit quality deterioration given the low grain and dairy prices, but other commodities are stable. Our staff stands ready to assist you if you are experiencing financial stress. We want to be proactive in working with you to help position your operation to weather the storm.
As we wrap up a season of Thanksgiving and look forward towards Christmas, I want to express my appreciation for the opportunity to lead this great company. I count it a privilege to work alongside our 225 employees and 15 directors throughout the western 54 counties in North Carolina to support what you do every day to feed and clothe our world. You have a noble cause and we are thankful to play a part. I hope you have a Merry Christmas and joyous holiday season!
CEO of Carolina Farm Credit
To read more about Carolina Farm Credit, our members and the ag industry, check out issues of our Leader magazine—you can read them online.
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