Running Out of Planting Space

The Lowndes County population has increased dramatically over the years, and while some say that's good for the economy, farmers say they're running out of space for planting.

As the population in Lowndes County continues to increase, available farmland is becoming scarce. An industry that generated more than $47 million in revenue last year is now in jeopardy.

"A lot of our agricultural land now is going for 5 to 10,000 dollars an acre, so consequently the farming industry can't grow because they can't buy expensive land," says James Herndon.

Many growers say soon they'll be forced to a different county because of cheaper land and less traffic.

Farmers say as Lowndes County moves from an agricultural economy to an industrial one, they're running out of space to grow their crops. They say if local officials don't do something soon, they're going to run them right out of business.

"You’re taking a good little town in Valdosta. That's a good place to live in and you keep building and pretty soon it’s going to be like a metropolitan Atlanta, where you can't even walk out the door with out somebody robbing you, and if your not careful that's what's going to happen here," says farmer Jim Cole.

Many farmers say they hope to come to an agreement with county officials, but if that doesn't happen, farmers say they'll have to move on.

We tried to interview the Lowndes County Zoning Authority Friday afternoon, but they declined our offer.