Better crops mean better retail sales - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Better crops mean better retail sales

December 2, 2003

Colquitt- Judy Thursby spent the morning stocking her shelves full of unique items she hopes will be gone by the end of the holiday season.

"A lot of people tell me that they come out of town to the smaller communities to find something different and unique and that's what we try to offer."

But she'll need more than just out-of-towners to keep Traditions alive. Small town retailers depend heavily on the purchases of local shoppers, many of whom are farmers.

"You can tell when the farming community does good you're going to pick up. We had a lot of rain and so that helped out," she says.

It helped out so much that extension agents say growers all over Southwest Georgia will find their pockets a little fuller this holiday season.

"It's one of those years that comes along every so often where it looks like we've made a pretty good yield on all the crops. The best thing about that, going along with the yields, the prices have been good," says Miller County Extension Agent Tim Moore

That means more money for growers to spend in local stores.

"Usually our hours are like 9:00 to 5:30. In October, I stayed until 7:00, 7:30. Sometimes it was 8 o'clock as long as people are out stirring around," admits Thursby.

As long as people are shopping, Thursby says she doesn't mind the longer hours.

Moore says yields and prices were almost disastrous for growers last year, one of the reasons local retailers say their businesses suffered.

Posted at 5:05 PM by elaine.armstrong@walb.com