2,200 Reached During 2017 Production Meetings

In this week’s Georgia Cotton Commission update we want to inform you that the Commission reached just over 2,200 growers and others interested in cotton during the 2017 production meeting season. Each year, county agents contact the UGA Cotton Team to set up cotton production meetings in most of the counties that grow cotton. The Georgia Cotton Commission assist in sponsoring these meetings by covering half of the cost of the meeting. During the meetings, we are also able to spend a few minutes updating the participants about the Commission’s activities over the past year as well as any future concerns or outlook that we may have. Last year we reached just over 1,800 people in our production meetings. The 22% increase in participation this year is a strong signal that many growers are more interested in cotton production when compared to last year. With the recent uptick in the December futures price of cotton and the increased meeting participation we saw this winter, it can be expected that GA will plant at least as much cotton as we did last year, if not slightly more.

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Secretary of Ag Nominee Sonny Perdue Gets Hearing

Yesterday the US Senate Agriculture Committee held the confirmation hearing for former Georgia Governor Sonny Perdue to be the next Secretary of Agriculture. Governor Perdue was introduced by former US Senator and former Ag Committee Chairman Saxby Chambliss and US Representative David Scott, who currently serves on the House Ag Committee. Both Senator Chambliss and Congressman Scott are from Georgia and are good friends of the cotton industry.

During Governor Perdue’s opening statement, he laid out his top 4 priorities as Secretary of Agriculture if confirmed. First, Governor Perdue said he would focus on creating jobs for rural America. Second, he said he would like to prioritize customer service at USDA. Third, Perdue said that he would ensure a safe and viable food supply. And last, he said he work with farmers to help them sustain the land for future generations. During the question and answer portions of the hearing, Perdue mentioned on several occasions that he understood the difficulty that cotton farmers have gone through these last couple of years. He committed to working with Congress and others in the administration to ensure that farmers and consumers needs are adequately met in the next farm bill.

Other notable agricultural interest from Georgia were also in attendance at the hearing. Congressman Sanford Bishop, AFBF President Zippy Duvall, GA Ag Commissioner Gary Black, and State Senator Tyler Harper all behind Perdue and next to his family during the hearing.

Click here to watch the full hearing from the Senate Ag Committee. 

screenshot_Sonny Perdue hearing2screenshot_Sonny Perdue hearing

GCC 10th Annual Meeting Videos Available

In this week’s Georgia Cotton Commission update we want to inform you that our Annual Meeting videos are now available on YouTube. We held our 10th Annual Meeting on January 25th in conjunction with the UGA Cotton Production Workshops. Members from the UGA Cotton Team held breakout sessions regarding insect pest management, soil fertility, economics, and various other topics. We also had speakers from Cotton Incorporated, The National Cotton Council, and Cotton Council International as guest speakers at our portion of the meeting. A local broadcast company recorded each of these sessions as well as the lunch awards ceremony and has created a playlist on YouTube. These videos will give producers a good update on the current topics of interest to growers who were not able to attend, or to those who did attend but would like a quick re-fresher on the topics. To access these videos, search “Georgia Cotton Commission 10th Annual Meeting” on YouTube or go to the producer page on our website at GeorgiaCottonCommission.org.

screenshot_YouTube_GCC 10th Annual Meeting

Cotton Market Jump/2017 Chinese Reserve Auction

In this week’s Georgia Cotton Commission update we will update you on the recent events in the cotton market. The last couple of weeks have seen a slow but steady rise in the futures price of cotton. This past week saw a sharp increase with the nearby contract getting close to 80 cents and the December ’17 contract going above 75 cents for the first time. Most analyst point to the March 6th start date of the 2017 Chinese Reserve Auction as causing this price jump. From May through August of 2016 the Chinese government began their first round of daily auctions to sell some of the cotton in their reserves. The 2016 auctions had a daily cap of 138,000 bales with a yearly total of just over 9 million bales. There was a noticeable jump in the market last year throughout the course of the auction. The 2017 auction quantities are expected to be around the same daily amounts with the Chinese government stating they’d like to sell about 30,000 tons per day, which is about 120,000 bales/day. Initial reports indicate that they are selling at that pace. The National Cotton Council has some good YouTube videos explaining the Chinese Reserve Auction program.

Click the links below to hear Dr. Jody Campiche explain the situation.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NbmcgCJVod8

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4jKLwrM4yDU

screenshot_YouTube_NCC Chinese Auctions

STAX Enrollment: 2015 vs 2016

In this week’s Georgia Cotton Commission report we want to give a brief update about crop insurance numbers. This year’s cotton insurance price is set at $0.73 per pound per the formula used by RMA which looks at the futures price of the December cotton contract from mid-January to mid-February. RMA has a neat online Price Discovery Tool that can help growers find the correct insurance price for their various commodities. In 2015, 92% of all cotton acres in Georgia had some type of crop insurance coverage with 40% of all cotton acres enrolled in STAX. In 2016, 96% of all cotton planted in Georgia had some type of crop insurance coverage with STAX coverage on 37% of the planted acres. This increase in the amount of insurance bought in 2016 versus 2015 and a decrease in the amount of STAX acres enrolled in Georgia mirrors national data. All cotton crop insurance nationally in 2015 was 91% and jumped to 93% in 2016 while STAX acres decrease from 31% nationally in 2015 to 25% in 2016. See chart below.

Click here for a chart of all 2015 data from last year’s blog.

  2015 2016
GA All Cotton Insurance 92% 96%
GA STAX 40% 37%
US All Cotton Insurance 91% 93%
US STAX 31% 25%