Bob Nichols, USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service

North Carolina is host to more than 9 million hogs.  According to the North Carolina Pork Council, the industry generates about $11 billion a year and supports about 46,000 full-time jobs. 

Kenneth C. Zirkel / Wikimedia Commons

One more high-profile performer has cancelled plans to appear in North Carolina due to the controversial new HB2 law – otherwise known as the “Bathroom Bill”.

New Hanover County Board of Commissioners

When the New Hanover County Commissioners gathered for a budget work session, differences in philosophy fueled some tense debate. 

Federal Bureau of Investigation

Larry Bonney thought he would launch his professional career as a school psychologist.  But life, as it often does, had other plans -- or more specifically, the Federal Bureau of Investigation – which was doing some heavy recruiting at the time. 

The Bureau hired Larry Bonney 46 years ago; now the decades spanning 1970 to 2000 hold stories of an airplane hijacking, the siege at Waco, Texas on the Branch Davidian compound, and a stint as a youth minister in California. 

Wikimedia Commons

North Carolina is the second-largest pork producer in the United States.  The importance of the industry to the state’s economy – and by extension to the thousands of people whose livelihood it supports – is undeniable.  This is the third edition of CoastLine in our series on hog farming in the state.  In each episode, we’ve narrowed the focus to one aspect of hog production.  We’ve looked at the economics of it as well as questions around environmental justice.  We’ve explored why some scientists say Concentrated Animal Feeding Operations – or CAFOs – negatively impact water qual


The rhetoric on the presidential campaign trail is as divisive and vitriolic as ever.  In fact, several large Republican donors have said they’re reluctant to open their wallets until there’s a fundamental shift in the tone of the campaign and a focus on policy.  WHQR’s Rachel Lewis Hilburn spoke recently with New York Times Best-Selling Author, Theologian, and Sojourners President Jim Wallis about politics and the decision confronting Americans.


New Hanover County is in the midst of budget negotiations.  Despite Cape Fear Community College’s rising operating costs, the recommended budget includes the same amount of money from the county as last year. 

Jim Wallis is a theologian and a prolific writer on issues of politics and morality.  He’s also the president of a social justice group called Sojourners in Washington, D.C.  He insists he’s not President Barack Obama’s spiritual advisor, but he does talk with Obama and other key Democrats and Republicans on Capitol Hill about moving away from partisan-based debates towards a dialogue grounded in morality. 


If you were a fan of Days of Our Lives at any point from the 1970s to the early 1990s, you will remember Dr. Neil Curtis.  Joe Gallison was nominated for an Emmy Award for playing the compulsive gambler who left a trail of broken hearts in his wake.  While Dr. Curtis may be Gallison's highest-profile and longest-running role at 17 years, it’s hardly the extent of his body of work. 

Wendee Nicole / Environ Health Perspect 121:A182-A189 (2013). http://dx.doi.org/10.1289/ehp.121-a182 [online 01 June 2013]

The business of pork production in North Carolina employed nearly 13,000 people in 2012.  That’s according to a Duke University report.  The swine industry is a key component of North Carolina’s economy.  But there are claims of negative impacts on the environment – specifically on bodies of waters that are in close proximity to concentrated animal feeding operations or CAFOs.  And there are questions about the industry’s impact on human health. 

But the business of hog farming has evolved over the last several decades.