Late-Season Hailstorm Impacts

Cotton Acreage in Southern PCG Counties

Friday, November 4, 2016                     By Mary Jane Buerkle

In a scene reminiscent of 2010, growers south of Lubbock near O'Donnell could do nothing Wednesday evening as hailstones, some the size of golf balls, pummeled cotton fields and damaging – in some cases, destroying – late-season crops that were open and nearing harvest.

Wednesday's hail event, which appears to be centered in southern Lynn and northern Dawson counties east and west of O'Donnell, is one of the most significant late-season hail events since the 2010 storm that affected tens of thousands of acres primarily in Yoakum, Terry, Lubbock and Lynn counties.

At press time, it was too early to tell how much acreage was directly affected due in part to flooding on county roads that prevented access to fields. Some areas received up to 4 inches of rain, with more in the forecast going into the weekend. PCG estimates the region overall is at about 35 percent harvested.

"This is absolutely a devastating loss for these producers and their ginners," PCG Executive Vice President Steve Verett said. "Whether it's a complete loss of the crop, or a reduction in the yield potential, it's especially tough knowing that for many of these producers, it was one of the best crops they'd had in years. You can't have any more in it than you have right now, except for the harvest cost, and insurance won't come near covering their losses, especially on dryland acreage."

The rainfall has halted harvest in much of the PCG service area for the time being, and with cool, cloudy weather with chances of additional rain in the forecast, it likely will be several days before harvest activity will resume for many growers. At this point, it is unknown what impact the rainfall will have on quality and yield.

What has been harvested so far, though, generally has brought very good grades. About 75 percent of the region's crop is color grade 21 or better and staple length is averaging 35-36.

December futures, at press time, were trading around 68 cents per pound.

 

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EPA Sets Comment Period for

Enlist Duo Label Expansion

Wednesday, Nov. 2, 2016   By Jim Steadman, cottongrower.com

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has set a public comment period for the proposed label amendment for Enlist Duo, which would allow use on Enlist cotton and extend product use on all labeled Enlist crops to 19 other states.

The proposal to amend the registration for Enlist Duo is described in detail on the EPA website.

Public comments on the proposal must be submitted by December 1, 2016, to EPA docket # EPA-HQ-OPP-2016-0594 at the Regulations.gov website. After the comment period closes, EPA will review all of the input and reach a final decision, which is expected in early 2017.

Enlist Duo was first registered in 2014 for use in Enlist corn and soybean crops in six states, and later in nine additional states. EPA has completed its analysis of all the scientific studies and is proposing to amend the registration of Enlist Duo for use on Enlist cotton in the existing 15 states, as well as expanding the use on registered crops in 19 other states.

According to EPA documents, weed resistance continues to be a serious problem for farmers, and Enlist Duo would provide an additional tool to reduce the spread of glyphosate-resistant weeds. But EPA is proposing special requirements to address concerns about potential increased weed resistance to 2,4-D, including continual surveying and reporting to EPA, grower education, and remedial programs.

In addition, the registration will expire in five years, allowing EPA to revisit the issue of resistance. The label will also contain resistance management information consistent with the Weed Science Society of America's Best Management Practices.

Enlist Duo is currently registered for use on Enlist corn and soybean crops in Arkansas, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Louisiana, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, Oklahoma, Ohio, South Dakota and Wisconsin.

The proposed label modification would allow use of Enlist Duo on Enlist cotton in the currently labeled states and expand the use for Enlist cotton, corn and soybeans in Alabama, Arizona, Colorado, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Maryland, Michigan, North Carolina, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia and West Virginia.

 

Organizations Launch Texans for

Property Rights Initiative

October 2016                                             From TSCRA

Fifteen Texas-based organizations recently announced the Texans for Property Rights coalition, which will lead a grassroots initiative for meaningful reform to state eminent domain laws.

As the state population continues to grow at a rapid pace, there is an increasing need for more property to build infrastructure for utilization of natural resources and to address transportation needs. While property owners recognize these demands, they also realize that their property rights must be better protected.

In Texas, about 95 percent of the land is privately owned, which puts the needs of the public in direct conflict with the rights of Texas property owners. These conflicts are not willing buyer-willing seller transactions and often play out in expensive, time-consuming, stressful and unfair situations, resulting in bad outcomes for property owners.

The Texans for Property Rights coalition is hosting meetings across the state allowing property owners to learn how they can get involved and share their concerns on eminent domain. An overview of current laws and possible improvements will also be presented by an eminent domain legal expert at these meetings.

For a list of meeting dates and locations and more information regarding the Texans for Property Rights initiative, visit the website at http://www.texansforpropertyrights.com. The site includes information on the legislative efforts and serves as a place for property owners to share their eminent domain stories and sign a petition to support the effort. Property owners are encouraged to visit this site to get involved and make their voices heard.

The growing coalition is currently comprised of Texas and Southwestern Cattle Raisers Association, Texas Farm Bureau, Texas Wildlife Association, Texas Forestry Association, South Texans' Property Rights Association, Texas Poultry Association, Texas Sheep and Goat Raisers Association, Independent Cattlemen's Association, Texas Grain Sorghum Association, Plains Cotton Growers, Inc., Corn Producers Association of Texas, Riverside & Landowners Protection Coalition, Texas Land & Mineral Owners Association, Texas Association of Dairymen and Texas Cattle Feeders Association.

 

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FSA County Committee Elections to Begin

Thursday, November 3, 2016      From the Farm Service Agency

Farm Service Agency Administrator Val Dolcini today announced that the U.S. Department of Agriculture will begin mailing ballots to eligible farmers and ranchers across the country for the 2016 FSA County Committee elections on Monday, Nov. 7, 2016. Producers must return ballots to their local FSA offices by Dec. 5, 2016, to ensure that their vote is counted.

"Producers elected to FSA county committees play a vital role in local agricultural decisions," said Dolcini. "Their contributions are essential to the daily operation of nearly 2,200 offices across the country. It is a valued partnership that helps us better understand the needs of the farmers and ranchers we serve."

Nearly 7,700 FSA County Committee members serve FSA offices nationwide. Each committee has three to 11 elected members who serve three-year terms of office. One-third of county committee seats are up for election each year. County committee members apply their knowledge and judgment to help FSA make important decisions on its commodity support programs, conservation programs, indemnity and disaster programs, and emergency programs and eligibility.

Producers must participate or cooperate in an FSA program to be eligible to vote in the county committee election. Approximately 1.5 million producers are currently eligible to vote. Farmers and ranchers who supervise and conduct the farming operations of an entire farm, but are not of legal voting age, also may be eligible to vote.

Farmers and ranchers will begin receiving their ballots the week of Nov. 7. Ballots include the names of candidates running for the local committee election. FSA has modified the ballot, making it easily identifiable and less likely to be overlooked. Voters who do not receive ballots in the coming week can pick one up at their local FSA offices. Ballots returned by mail must be postmarked no later than Dec. 5, 2016. Newly elected committee members will take office Jan. 1, 2017.

For more information, visit the FSA website at www.fsa.usda.gov/elections. You may also contact your local USDA Service Center or FSA office. Visit http://offices.usda.gov/ to find an FSA office near you.

 

Sold-Out Sourcing USA Summit

Coming to California

Friday, October 28, 2016        From Cotton Council International

A sold-out audience of the most influential executives in the global cotton fiber and textile business, representing 26 countries, is slated to attend the Sourcing USA Summit in Rancho Palos Verdes, CA, from Nov. 5-8, 2016. The Summit will provide attendees ample opportunities to network and strengthen connections with industry counterparts from around the globe, with the goal of increasing U.S. cotton exports. The registered textile mills represent 18.3 million bales of annual cotton consumption.

The Summit boasts 32 sponsors, a lineup of stellar speakers and a carefully constructed agenda, focused on the major economic, environmental and policy factors affecting the market for cotton and cotton products.

Cotton Council International, Cotton Incorporated, and the U.S. cotton industry host the Sourcing USA Summit, in cooperation with the United States Department of Agriculture Foreign Agricultural Services.

The 2016 Summit Exporter Sponsors include: Jess Smith & Sons Cotton Co.; White Gold Cotton Marketing LLC; Allenberg Cotton Co.; Cargill Cotton; Toyoshima; PCCA; Calcot, Ltd.; Omnicotton; COFCO Agri; Glencore; Staplcotn; Toyo Cotton; ECOM; JG Boswell; Cotton Growers Cooperative; Engelhart CTP (US) LLC; Olam Cotton; San Joaquin Valley Quality Cotton Growers Association; and Supima.

The 2016 Summit Allied Industry Sponsors include: Uster Technologies; Wakefield Inspection; Cargo Control Group; Cotton Outlook; Rieter Textile Systems; ICE Futures U.S.; CoBank; TransGlobal Inspections; Bayer CropScience; Applied DNA Sciences; Monsanto; Murata Machinery, Ltd.; and INTL FCStone Merchant Services.

For more information on the Summit, please visit www.sourcingusasummit.com.