AGRICULTURE: Costly Peanut Plenty

For Jimmy Carter, the road to national political pre-eminence has been paved with peanuts. The Carter family's peanut farming and warehousing operation has provided the all-but-certain Democratic nominee with the money and time to pursue his phenomenally successful political career. At the same time, Carter's name has drawn more attention than any other—with the arguable exceptions of Planters and Skippy—to the peanut industry. It is big, modern and thriving as never before, partly at public expense.

Peanuts today provide a livelihood to 60,000 farmers on 1.6 million acres scattered through such states as Texas. Alabama, North Carolina, Virginia —and above all,...

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