The North Carolina Soybean Producers Association was selected as the host to showcase agricultural production in the state as part of the Regional Exchange and Awareness Program (REAP) sponsored by the American Soybean Association and the United Soybean Board.

The REAP Tour will take soybean growers representing 12 Northern and Mid-western U.S. states to diverse agricultural sites around eastern North Carolina. Tour dates are Aug. 4-8, 2008.

"This program is a great opportunity for growers to learn about the needs of farmers in other regions of the country and learn about agriculture and industry unique to a particular region," said ASA President John Hoffman. “Thanks to the United Soybean Board for sponsoring REAP and to the North Carolina Soybean Producers Association for graciously hosting soybean producers this year."

The American Soybean Association has offered this popular program to farmer-leaders since 1991. REAP tours give producers a unique opportunity to exchange information with growers from other regions of the United States and to further develop producer knowledge and skills. The REAP program also helps U.S. soybean producers to build the relationships necessary to maintain a strong and proactive voice on behalf of farm-related legislative priorities in Washington, D.C.

“Soybean producers work closely with counterparts in about 25 other states for the benefit of the entire soybean industry. North Carolina is one of the most diverse states with so many types of agricultural production. We are proud that we have much more agriculture than we are able to show to the REAP Tour participants,” said North Carolina Soybean Producers Association President Jacob Parker, of Columbia, N.C.

The REAP Tour will travel by bus to a variety of farms, agribusinesses and research sites around eastern North Carolina.

For more information contact: Charles Hall, North Carolina Soybean Producers Association, 919-839-5700, cshall@ncsoy.org