High Plains Cotton Acreage Down From 2011

Friday, June 29, 2012                          By Mary Jane Buerkle

      High Plains producers planted less cotton than they did in 2011, according to the June 29 USDA Planted Acreage Report.

      USDA's National Agricultural Statistics Service reports that 4.15 million acres of High Plains land were planted to cotton this year, a 9.1 percent decrease from 4.57 million acres planted in 2011.

      The bulk of the shift came from the northern portion of PCG's service area, where acreage went from 1.25 million in 2011 to just 960,000 in 2012, a 23 percent decrease. Planted acreage was down just 4 percent in the Southern High Plains.

      Darren Hudson, Professor and Larry Combest Agricultural Competitiveness Endowed Chair in the Department of Agricultural and Applied Economics at Texas Tech, said the decrease likely can be attributed to price and multiple crop options, particularly in the north. As cotton prices dropped relative to corn, he said, growers may have opted into planting more corn, or another crop.

      Although overall progress of this year's High Plains cotton crop is better than 2011, growers still face challenges. Rains earlier in the month helped firmly establish crops on irrigated and most dryland acreage, but with that moisture came hail and high winds that forced some farmers to replant. Additional rain still is needed across the entire area in order to sustain the crop.

      Temperatures have exceeded the 100-degree mark over most of the High Plains in the past week, and although forecasts predict a slight drop in temperature over the next several days, chances of rain at this point are slim.

      Statewide, USDA reports that 6.8 million acres of cotton were planted, a 4.2 percent decrease from 2011 when Texas producers planted 7.1 million acres. Nationwide, planted acreage is estimated at 12.4 million, down 14 percent from 2011.

      The June Acreage report is based on producer surveys of actual planted acreage information. It is the market's first glimpse of how many acres have actually been planted to various crops during the current growing season and sets the stage for evaluating where the crop stands at this point. Up until now acreage discussions have been based on survey results designed to get a handle on producer intentions before they had actually put a seed in the ground.


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West Texas Agricultural Chemicals Institute

Annual Conference


Thursday, September 6 7:50 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.

Scottish Rite Center

1101 70th St., Lubbock


5 TDA-approved CEU's * 6 CCA-approved CEU's

More Info: http://wtaci.tamu.edu

Registration Available July 2012


Space Still Available for

Texas International Cotton School

      Registration remains open for the 32nd Texas International Cotton School, scheduled for August 6-17, 2012, in Lubbock.

      The intensive two-week program covers all aspects of cotton, from the field to the fabric. Since its inception, the school has been a collaboration between the Texas cotton merchants who make up the Lubbock Cotton Exchange and the faculty and staff of Texas Tech's Fiber and Biopolymer Research Institute.

      During the two weeks of the school, more than 30 experts from across the United States instruct the students, who learn about the cotton marketing chain – including seed breeding, farm production, harvesting, ginning, warehousing, merchandising, and textile manufacturing.

      All aspects of U.S. and global trade of cotton are covered, so the students obtain an understanding of what is required to successfully participate in the U.S. cotton market and to deliver the cottons needed in diverse export markets. They learn about the important quality attributes of cotton fibers and how these translate into processing efficiency and textile product quality.

      Throughout the program, they have repeated opportunities to interact with the cotton merchants of the Lubbock Cotton Exchange and the fiber and textile experts of Texas Tech University.

      Sterling Terrell, cotton marketer with Ocho Gin and a graduate of the 2011 Texas International Cotton School, said that the program was of great benefit to him, especially since he was new to the cotton industry when he started at the gin.

      "The most invaluable part was getting to know the people in the industry," Terrell said, adding that the program is an excellent investment that has returned much to him and the gin.

      For more information, including tuition and curriculum, visit http://www.texasintlcottonschool.com or call Christi Chadwell, TICS coordinator, at (806) 742-2838 Ext. 233.


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