High Plains Production Estimate Down Again

Friday, October 10, 2014             By Mary Jane Buerkle

      As has been the trend over the past couple of months, the National Agricultural Statistics Service decreased High Plains upland cotton production estimates by 170,000 bales from their September report, projecting that growers will produce 3,695,000 bales this season.

      The Northern High Plains area decreased by 105,000 bales, while the Southern High Plains decreased by 65,000 bales.

      Yield per acre dropped for the Northern High Plains, from 839 pounds in the September estimate to 765 pounds in the October estimate. The Southern High Plains dropped from 545 in September to 531 in October.

      The Northern High Plains is projected to harvest 565,000 acres of cotton, down from 575,000 acres in the September report. Harvested acres actually increased in the Southern High Plains to 2,525,000 acres, up 5,000 from the September report. The abandonment rate for the Northern High Plains remains at about 30%, compared to 18% for the Southern High Plains.

      Statewide, the production number dropped to 6.25 million bales, down from 6.6 million in the September report. The nationwide estimate for upland cotton dropped to 15.7 million bales, down 300,000 bales from the September report, but still up 28 percent from 2013. December futures were trading around 64 cents at press time.

      Harvest is slowly beginning on the High Plains, with first bales being ginned at a few area cotton gins. Some producers are choosing to apply harvest-aids to their cotton while others are waiting for a freeze to begin the defoliation process. Weather forecasts call for a slight chance of rain this weekend and then warm, dry weather next week, which would be favorable in preparing this crop for harvest.


2014 High Plains and Northern Rolling Plains

Cotton Harvest-Aid Guide

Now Available at http://www.plainscotton.org


Beltwide Cotton Conferences Offer Effective

Decision-Making Help

Monday, October 6, 2014  From the National Cotton Council

      Attendees at the 2015 Beltwide Cotton Conferences will have access to individual reports and panel discussions containing information useful for helping them make key cotton research/production/marketing-related decisions.

      Registration now is open for this National Cotton Council-coordinated forum, set for January 5-7 at the Marriott Rivercenter in San Antonio. Housing/registration instructions, a schedule of events and general information are at http://www.cotton.org/beltwide. Registration costs before December 15 are: $175 for NCC/Cotton Foundation members, university and USDA researchers, Extension personnel, associations and consultants; $300 for non-NCC members and $80 for students. Continuing education units or "CEUs" are offered.

      The 2015 Beltwide will begin at noon on January 5 with a half-day Cotton Consultants Conference session that will focus on new developments from industry, including discussions of and reports on new varieties, chemistries and emerging technologies. The session is open to all attendees and also will include an update on NCC-led efforts to deliver contamination-free cotton and other challenges the U.S. cotton industry is currently facing.

      Beginning on the morning of January 6, the 11 cotton technical conferences will meet concurrently. On that day, some of these technical conferences will meet jointly with the consultants conference at specific times to discuss key issues in those disciplines, including current research.

      Among timely topics being considered for those joint sessions are pollinator health and control of plant bugs and other key insect pests. A panel discussion will feature state-by-state university recommendations for overall weed control, including management of Palmer amaranth and water hemp utilizing new and existing technologies. Other topics likely to be addressed are: 1) managing nematodes, target leaf spot, root rot and other cotton diseases, 2) the results of uniform agronomy/physiology studies conducted in multiple Cotton Belt locations during 2014, 3) plant nutrition/soil management, including updates on irrigation and fertility practices, and 4) the Fieldprint Calculator's development status.

      The "Beltwide" continues to be the site for the following recognition events: The Cotton Foundation/Farm Press Publications' High Cotton Awards, Cotton Grower magazine's Cotton Achievement Award and Cotton Farming magazine's Consultant of the Year. The National Cotton Ginners Association also will conduct meetings in conjunction with the Conferences, including participation in the technical conferences for ginning and engineering systems.


Farm Bill Meetings Scheduled

      Mark your calendars for these upcoming Farm Bill meetings:

      Oct. 21 - Farm Bill Decision Aid Tool Meeting, 9 a.m.-Noon., RSVP Computer Lab, 321 SW 2nd, Tulia. More info: (806) 995-3726.

      Oct. 22 - Farm Bill Decision Aid Tool Meeting, 9-11 a.m., Cochran Activity Building, 200 W. Taylor, Morton. More info: (806) 266-5215.

      Oct. 22 - Farm Bill Decision Aid Tool Meeting, 1-3:30 p.m., Ag and Community Center, 1619 Hall Avenue, Littlefield. More info: (806) 385-4222.

      Oct. 29 - Farm Bill Decision Aid Tool Meeting, 9-11 a.m., Lighthouse Electric Cooperative, Floydada (corner of Hwy 70 and Hwy 207). More info: (806) 983-4912.

      To add a meeting to this schedule, please email maryjane@plainscotton.org. A complete list of all of these meetings is available on the Plains Cotton Growers website at http://www.plainscotton.org/mj/agconferences/agconferences.html.