Since its inception, North Carolina State University has played a significant role in the development of the tobacco industry in North Carolina and consequently, in the development of the economic and cultural heritage of the state. During the period in which the university has been in existence, economic and environmental factors threatening small farms in North Carolina have been meticulously addressed by researchers working in what is now the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences and in the various offices of the Agricultural Extension Service. Their efforts have significantly enhanced the livelihoods of tobacco farmers and, however indirectly, have proved to be a crucial factor in North Carolina’s quality of life. Regardless of how far one's life may be from arduous labor on a tobacco farm, the business of tobacco has been the state's economic linchpin since colonial times.
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