- Blair Fannin of the Texas AgriLife Extension program reports that global cotton production is expected to keep prices down, though supply is the big question. Texas and India are both expected to produce much larger crops than predicted at the start of the season when drought looked to be a limiting factor before planting followed by rains which turned crops around. The unknown level of Chinese stockpiles and concerns over limited availability of exports to the country also remain a large market concern. However while a surplus in global production is expected there are also concerns that much of the available cotton this season will be relatively low grade, which could spark increased interest and higher prices for premium grade cotton.
- Neel Kamal reports for the Times of India that rains in the Punjab region earlier this month damaged the area’s cotton crop, reducing quality and delaying arrivals to area markets. Local prices have also suffered from the poor quality of the crop.
- Ranjana Diggikar reports for The Times of India that the country’s cotton farmers need more alternatives to Bt cotton to remain profitable. While Bt cotton remains productive in well irrigated areas, dryland regions that are experiencing worsening drought conditions are suffering from lack of yields and the increased cost of seed, fertilizer, and pesticides. Many are returning to a local variety which is said to have similar fiber quality to Bt cotton and should sell for close to what Bt cotton sells for on the market. Local researchers and breeders are working to develop more varieties that will work well in different areas, but “no miracles can be expected soon.”
- A Press Release from the National Cotton Council on AgWeb.com reminds cotton growers that the deadline to apply for the Cotton Transition Assistance Program is next Tuesday, October 7. The program is meant to offer financial assistance to growers as they adjust to the new Farm Bill’s crop insurance problems. The release provides additional information on the program as well as the new ARC and PLC insurance programs.
- John Russel reports for South Carolina Morning News that the state’s growing season and cotton crop are expected to end the same way they began: wet. A wet start to the year was followed by a dry summer which looked like it would offer a bumper crop until rains returned which haven’t let up. Farmers are harvesting as fast as they’re able with the rains but quality is expected to suffer and yields may decline as rains stimulate additional plant growth. There’s no way to tell if this year’s crop will be better than last year til it’s all out of the fields, and prices currently aren’t very favorable either.