USDA Announces First 2003-crop

Counter-cyclical Advance Payment

LUBBOCK, October 24, 2003        By Shawn Wade

      United StatesDepartment of Agriculture Secretary Ann M. Veneman announced late last week thefirst advance counter-cyclical payment rates for the 2003-crop Direct andCounter-cyclical Program (DCP).

      For Upland cottonproducers the first partial advance payment toward the 2003-cropCounter-cyclical payment was announced at 2.01 cents per pound. That figureequals 35 percent of the projected final payment rate of 5.73 cents per pound.

      Payment rates forother program crops are included in the table below:


2003 DCPCounter-cyclical Payment Projections &

First (35%) AdvancePayment Rates



Projected Rate-Total

First Partial Advance Rate













Upl. Cotton









short ton



Source: USDA, Farm Service Agency


      For producers whohave watched market prices for cotton surge over the past few weeks, theannouncement was met with a mixture of appreciation and concern as higherprices could still zero out the CC payment calculation and create a situationwhere producers would be required to repay all or part of the advance payment.

      Early onprognosticators had opined that the 2003 CC payment could be eroded by as muchas 4-6 cents as a result of then steadily improving market prices.

      What fewanticipated, however, was the quick run-up that has occurred thus far.

      Back in June theDecember 2003 New York futures contract was trading in the 52-cent range. Takea snapshot today and the same contract is trading near 80 cents with littleindication that a huge drop can be expected.

      That differencein the market has many producers wondering whether or not this might be allthat the 2003 DCP program will provide in terms of a Counter-cyclical paymenton this year’s crop.

      Knowing that thebulk of the marketings used to calculate the weighted average price received bygrowers for any given crop year occurs during the November, December, Januaryand February time period forms the crux of producer concerns that a repaymentsituation could still be created.

      Make no mistake,producers are happy that prices have surged upward. As a result, those thathave cotton to sell will gladly take their money from the market instead of thegovernment.

      The concern thatyou hear however, stems from the fact that for many on the High Plains there issimply no cotton to sell as a result of a tough 2003 growing season.


TALL Program Provides Training Ground

For Future Agricultural Leaders

LUBBOCK, October 24, 2003        By Shawn Wade

      Applications arenow being accepted for the TALL IX class of the Texas Agriculture LifetimeLeadership program. TAMU Professor and TALL program coordinator JimMazurkiewicz notes that the application period for the program will remain openthrough March 15, 2004.

      Since its’ firstclass (TALL I) met in November of 1987, the TALL program has become one of thepremier leadership development tools of the agriculture industry.

      The goal of theprogram is essentially to identify and develop the talents of futureagriculture industry leaders.

      The missionstatement of the TALL program says it best, “TALL will create a cadre of Texasleaders to help ensure effective understanding and encourage positive action onkey issues, theories, policy and economics that will advance the agricultureindustry.”

      Prospectiveapplicants who feel they possess the qualities, characteristics and desire tobecome effective leaders within the agriculture industry can contact Dr.Mazurkiewicz to request an application or may visit the programs website at ( to obtain applicationmaterials and learn more about the program.