Dec. 13, 2016
GUILTY IN SYLVESTER
PEANUT BUTTER CASE
JUDGE OK's $11.2 MILLION SETTLEMENT
Food giant ConAgra pleaded guilty in federal court today (Tuesday) to a misdemeanor charge of shipping Peter Pan peanut butter tainted with salmonella from its plant in Sylvester, sickening hundreds of people in 2006 and 2007.
A federal judge in Albany approved the
$11.2 million settlement, which includes an $8 million fine and another $3.2 million in forfeitures to the federal government -- called the largest fine in food safety history in the United States.
The settlement ends the case that began in November 2006 when approximately 625 people in 47 states became ill with salmonella. The contamination at ConAgra's Sylvester plant was said to result from an old peanut roaster that was failing, a storm-damaged sugar silo that was allowing insects and birds to gain access and a leaky roof that was allowing moisture to get into the production process.
ConAgra launched a huge recall in February 2007, destroying and urging consumers to throw out all of its peanut butter produced since 2004. The company then
spent $275 million on upgrades at the Sylvester plant and adopted new testing procedures to screen peanut butter for contaminants.
August 2007, Peter Pan peanut butter returned to supermarkets.
At the time, ConAgra issued a statement saying the company didn't know its peanut butter was contaminated with salmonella before it was shipped. The plea agreement notes that ConAgra knew peanut butter made in Sylvester had twice tested positive for salmonella in 2004, and that the
company destroyed the tainted peanut butter and identified the likely sources of contamination.
Prosecutors said ConAgra had not finished fixing the problems by the time of the 2006-07 salmonella outbreak.
Copart Inc. a global online vehicle auction company, is expanding its Tifton location.
expansion is a great complement to the
other locations we have in
, Copart CEO
. "We recently announced six other expansions and two new locations along the East Coast, including our newest
is located at
399 Oakridge Church Road
and currently hosts online auctions
at 10 a.m
. Copart's inventory is not limited to vehicles but also includes a wide collection of boats, RVs, ATVs, motorcycles and more.
The company offered few details about its
VB3 technology links sellers to more than
750,000 members across the globe through its multi-channel online platform. Members can participate in multiple online auctions around the world simultaneously via mobile, tablet and desktop.
Copart was founded in 1982, and sells vehicles on behalf of insurance companies, banks, finance companies, fleet operators, dealers, car dealerships and others as well as vehicles sourced from the public.
Students have a gift-wrapping party at Eighth Street Middle School.
EIGHTH STREET STUDENTS
MAKE CHRISTMAS BRIGHTER
More than 100 Eighth Street Middle School students donated more than $2,100 and took 25 primary school students Christmas shopping this week in Tifton.
The younger students chose one gift for themselves, and then got to shop for gifts for their families.
Even a "blue" Santa was on hand to make it a "blue Christmas" in the best Tift County Blue Devils tradition.
Everyone then met back at the school and had a Christmas gift-wrapping party.
VSU AWARDS TY TY STUDENT
AWARD OF EXCELLENCE
Tiffany Brianna Tanner of
has received the Fall 2016
President's Award for Academic Excellence
for the James L. and Dorothy H. Dewar College of Education and Human Services at
Valdosta State University
The President's Award for Academic Excellence is presented to the graduating student with the
highest grade point average
in each of VSU's five colleges: James L. and Dorothy H. Dewar College of Education and Human Services, College of Arts and
Sciences, College of the Arts, College of Nursing and Health Sciences, and the Harley Langdale Jr. College of Business Administration.
Tanner is a graduate of Tiftarea Academy, Class of 2013. She graduated summa cum laude from VSU last weekend with a bachelor of science in education, specifically middle grades education mathematics and science.
Tanner served as the official banner carrier for the College of Education and Human Services during the undergraduate commencement ceremony.
During her time as a
VSU student, Tanner consistently achieved
Dean's List standing and was selected for
Who's Who Among Students in American Universities and Colleges. She served as a university ambassador, logged more than 80 hours of volunteer service and worked as a student assistant for the Office of the Vice President of Finance and Administration.
She is the daughter of
Deborah Tanner and the late
"My plans after graduation are to find a job teaching middle grades math, preferably somewhere around the
Tift County/Worth County area," she said.
"One of my career goals is to be a middle grades
math teacher for several years. After a few years of teaching, I want to go back and get my
master's degree in middle grades education while working. Eventually, I want to get my
leadership degree and become a
principal or vice principal, but not until after I've taught
middle grades for several years."
TOTS GATHER 'TOYS FOR TOTS'
These Tifton First United Methodist Church preschoolers show off their Toys for Tots donations this Christmas season. The preschoolers and their families are supporting the annual toy drive sponsored locally by the United Way of South Central Georgia and the Marine Corps Reserve, providing toys for needy local children.
SUCCESSFUL COAT DRIVE TO
'KEEP 'EM WARM'
Nearly 1,500 coats were donated this year for the "Keep 'em Warm" coat drive, sponsored annually by Melissa Hughes.
"Thanks to a giving community for supporting my efforts to make our community better," said Hughes, a Tift County commissioner.
TIFTON-TIFT COUNTY CHAMBER OF COMMERCE
Monday, Dec. 12
LITERACY VOLUNTEERS HAS
BOSTON BUTTS FOR HOLIDAYS
Literacy Volunteers of Tifton-Tift County has a few Boston Butts for those who would like them for their holiday parties or for gifts.
Call Bonnie Sayles at 229-391-2527 to pick up for a $25 donation.
Proceeds help fund tutor training and materials to help local people learn to read or prepare for their GED exams.
GA AG FORECAST TO COVER
ECONOMY, REGS, FARM BILL
Georgia Ag Forecast series will be held around the state
Jan. 18-27 in
Macon, Marietta, Carrollton, Tifton, Bainbridge, Lyons, Waynesboro and Athens.
University of Georgia agricultural
economists will present insights into the latest market and regulatory conditions for the
state's largest industry.
Hosted by the UGA College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences, the 2017 seminar comes to Tifton on Jan. 23 at the UGA Tifton Campus Conference Center.
"The main objective of the Ag Forecast seminar series is to provide Georgia's producers and agribusiness leaders with information on where we think the industry is headed in the upcoming year," said Kent Wolfe, director of the UGA Center for Agribusiness and Economic Development.
"It helps producers plan for the next year, but it's also good for bankers and others who have businesses involved in agriculture or who will be impacted by the farm economy."
Economists from the
Center for Agribusiness and Economic Development and from the college's department of agricultural and applied economics will deliver the economic outlook, which will focus on Georgia's major commodities and the way that global markets, weather patterns and historical trends will affect those commodities.
The featured speaker at the Tifton seminar will be Bob Redding of the Redding Firm in Washington, D.C. Redding will discuss major themes that may be addressed in the 2018 farm bill and will moderate a discussion on the bill.
CHRISTMAS CHEER FLOWERS AT UGA
The club also wrote Christmas cards to each of the residents. Members involved were Alex Holman, Christina Garner, Maggie Ramsey and Megan Powell.
UGA TIFTON HONORS OUTSTANDING SENIOR
YOU WITH PROFESSIONALISM
BEFORE, DURING & AFTER THE SALE
1404 7th St. SE, Moultrie, GA
Large lot; fenced back yard: 3 bedroom/2 bath home, 1,175-square feet, with a double garage.
Visit Us Online:
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Blue Skies &
Each & Every
FRANK SAYLES JR.
Editor & Publisher
A Service of Sayles Unlimited Marketing LLC