Georgia Upset Over Alabama's Plans to Adopt the Peach

Posted on February 24, 2006

The BBC reports that Alabama is close to adopting the peach as its official state fruit tree. The BBC describes a growing row between the two states. Georgia, which calls itself "the Peach State", is not pleased with Alabama's plans.

In Georgia, which made the peach its official state fruit back in 1995, Alabama's decision set pulses racing.

"Georgia is the Peach State," Robert Dickey, a past president of the Georgia Peach Council, told the New York Times.

"We're known internationally as the Peach State. We have always been the Peach State, and we think we have the best peaches in the world."

Alabama Democrat James Martin thinks Alabama peaches are much better than Georgia peaches. He says, "If you've ever tasted Alabama peaches, you'd throw rocks at Georgia." But Thomas Irvin, Georgia's agricultural commissioner, snarked back with this comment to the New York Times, "I didn't realise Alabama had any peaches at all." A New York Times article says some people think Alabama is being greedy by naming both an official state fruit and a state fruit tree.
Alabama already has an official state fruit, the blackberry, adopted in 2004. Adding a tree fruit to the list, much less horning in on one indisputably linked to Georgia, just seemed greedy to some.

"We probably grow 10 times as many peaches as they do," Mr. Dickey said.

The Times article says the fruit tree resolution is expected to pass the Alabama Senate. This will make three states with the peach as an official state fruit. The peach is also the official state fruit for South Carolina but Georgia isn't complaining about that.