Rumors have been circulating for years now about a Temik like aldicarb product being made available by a company different than Bayer CropScience, the original formulator of Temik. About two weeks ago it was announced that North Carolina based AgLogic had been approved to sell AgLogic 15G Aldicarb Pesticide in 2016. Georgia is the only state approved to sell AgLogic 15G and it will only be available through CNI (Chemnut). According to the AgLogic website, the new product will perform similar to Temik and provide “up to six weeks of residual control of thrips, aphids, leafhoppers, whiteflies, mites, nematodes and other chewing and sucking pests.”
Click here to view the AgLogic 15G Aldicarb Pesticide label.
Pricing and availability is unknown at this time. We’d suggest you contact your local CNI representative if you are interested.
In other news, the GA General Assembly completed its 40th and final day yesterday of the 2016 session. The cotton industry did not have any specific request in the state budget this year but the industry has been supportive of the UGA CAES request. The final budget includes funding for the following UGA CAES positions: grain crop agronomist, viticulturalist, vegetable pathologist, ruminant nutritionist, and a row crop physiologist. Some of these are listed under “Ag Experiment Station” and others under “Cooperative Extension Service.” Click here to view the budget (NOTE: Sections 41.1 and 41.3 on page 98 cover UGA CAES; cc = conference committee).
In December Congress passed the 2016 Consolidated Appropriations Act that allowed USDA to once again use marketing certificates in the marketing assistance loan (MAL) program.
We will attempt to summarize the marketing certificate program in this space, but a more comprehensive USDA Fact Sheet can be found here and a summary from Plains Cotton Growers found here.
Basically a commodity certificate will allow a cotton producer to utilize the MAL program without being penalized for a benefit not received in cash. Without a commodity certificate in place a producer will show a marketing loan gain (MLG) if the commodity is redeemed out of the loan at a value lower than the loan rate (52 cents for cotton). If a producer puts cotton in the loan at 52 cents and paid the loan back at the adjusted world price (AWP) at 50 cents for example, which is how the loan is supposed to work, then on paper the producer has a 2 cent MLG even though it is not a cash benefit. With certificates in place, the MLG will not count towards a producer’s overall payment limit. Essentially, a producer “purchases” a certificate from USDA and immediately exchanges the certificate for the outstanding collateral (the crop in the loan). This is a huge benefit to cotton growers in that a grower can freely utilize the MAL program without being penalized for accumulating MLGs that count towards a producer’s payment limit. When the price of cotton decreases the MLG increase and would have set up the situation for many producers to come close to their payment limit. Once a payment limit would have been reached, a producer could not have used the MAL program anymore.
Loan Deficiency Payments (LDPs) are calculated similar to the MAL payments except that a producer is not putting a crop up as collateral for the loan. LDPs are realized when the AWP is below the loan rate for a commodity. A producer can either use the MAL program or take the LDP, but not both for the same bale of cotton. In the earlier example, if the AWP for cotton is 50 cents and a producer takes the LDP, then a 2 cent LDP is made to the producer. The math works the same whether you utilized the MAL program or the LDP program. The difference now with certificates is that LDPs still count towards a producer’s payment limit (as specified in the 2014 Farm Bill, previous farm bills did not include LDPs or MALs in payment limits).
A simple way to avoid the LDP counting towards a producer’s payment limit, would be to put the crop in the loan, get a certificate, and then redeem all at once (or as soon as possible). Plains Cotton Growers refers to this as a “turn-around loan” and is an easy way to utilize certificates and the MAL program in order to function similar to taking the LDP. In GA, it appears most producers like to take the LDP instead of using the MAL.
Cotton is not the only beneficiary, any commodity with a MAL program is eligible to purchase commodity certificates.
From February 8 – March 8, 2016 Georgia cotton producers had the opportunity to vote for the continuation of the $1 per bale assessment to fund the programs of the Georgia Cotton Commission. By law, producers must vote on each commodity commission in Georgia every three years. The final tally of votes recorded by the Georgia Department of Agriculture shows an 87% favorable vote.
Mike Lucas, Chairman of the Georgia Cotton Commission and a Bleckley County producer, said that he is “pleased with the 87% vote by our growers, because we still have many issues ahead for cotton in Georgia.” Lucas says that the Commission’s research, promotion, and education programs have provided value to the Georgia cotton producer since 1965. He notes that 2016 will be even a greater challenge for growers than 2015 and one of the toughest years in many farmers’ lives. “We hope for better prices and lower input cost in 2016. On the policy front, we think a cottonseed PLC/ARC program is important even though Secretary Vilsack has said he won’t sign off on it,” says Lucas.
“Right now the industry is still discussing the possibility of a cost-share program with USDA for ginning assistance from the 2015 season. While this is not a silver bullet, it should help Georgia growers during these tough times,” notes Lucas.
For more information about the Georgia Cotton Commission’s programs of research, promotion, and education, please visit www.GeorgiaCottonCommission.org or call 478-988-4235.
During the last week of February, several Georgia Cotton Commission (GCC) board members and staff were in Washington, D.C. to stress the importance of the economic conditions currently being faced by Georgia cotton producers. GCC Vice-Chairman Lee Cromley was joined by board members Matt Coley of Vienna, Jimmy Webb of Leary, and GCC Executive Director Richey Seaton. While in Washington, the group was able to meet with staff members from both the House and Senate Agricultural Committees. GCC members stressed to the staffers the need for some form of relief to Georgia cotton growers. With the recent announcement by USDA Secretary Tom Vilsack that USDA doesn’t have authority under the current Farm Bill to designate cottonseed as an ‘other oilseed,’ as the industry had requested, GCC members were visiting with Ag Committee staff members to look at every possible option available to provide assistance to the cotton industry.
GCC members were able to meet with staff members of Georgia Congressmen Sanford Bishop and Austin Scott. Congressmen David Scott and Rick Allen also visited with GCC during the trip to Washington. A brief meeting with Senator David Perdue, who serves on the Senate Ag Committee, was also held during the trip. It was reiterated to the Senator, Congressmen, and their staffers the importance of the cotton industry in Georgia and the current situation faced by cotton growers. Cotton farmers in Georgia and across America are suffering the fourth consecutive year of decreasing prices and increasing input costs. For 2016, American agriculture in general is expected to produce crops for the second year in a row at levels below the costs of production. Georgia cotton growers are fortunate to have elected officials in the House and Senate who understand the importance of cotton to Georgia and who are searching for a solution to the current crisis.
At the time of this writing, Secretary Vilsack has stood by his original statement that he does not have legal authority to designate cottonseed as an ‘other oilseed.’