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Cautious Optimism For Texas This Year

When you thumb through this issue of Cotton Farming, you will notice a definite Texas theme in the stories – and there is a reason for that. Our staff is preparing to travel to Lubbock next month for the annual meetings of the Texas Cotton Ginners’ Association (TCGA) and Plains Cotton Growers (PCG). This is easily one of the highlights of the year. It’s a time to reconnect with Texas friends and continue the successful co-sponsorship of the TCGA Cotton Trade Show.

Even with low cotton prices this year, Texas producers and ginners remain steadfast in their quest to deliver a quality crop in 2015. It won’t be easy, but this is an innovative group. Producers will undoubtedly try to be efficient in all phases of their farming practices – particularly for input costs. Meanwhile, ginners will maintain their equipment and be diligent as they invest in new technology.

To gain a better perspective on how TCGA and PCG are approaching this year, we thought it would be informative to interview the presidents of each organization. In this article, you will find a candid conversation with Buzz Cooper (TCGA president) and Shawn Holladay (PCG president). Their comments reflect a no-nonsense assessment of the many challenges that Texas producers and ginners face. And yet there also is a resolve typical of anybody connected to the state’s cotton industry.

Yes, the price situation isn’t encouraging. So how do you deal with it? You shoot for the highest possible yields and take advantage of positive soil moisture levels. No, the drought hasn’t ended in Texas, but conditions are drastically improved compared to recent years.

In their interview, Cooper and Holladay also talk about the importance of TCGA and PCG members continuing their support of these respective organizations. At a time when everyone in the cotton industry is learning how the new farm law works, it pays to have these groups doing their part to help in the education process.

Is it possible that Texas could deliver a seven or eight million-bale crop this year? It is an ambitious target in light of reduced cotton acres. But don’t be surprised if the state defies the odds and finds a way to overcome these numerous obstacles.

We expect to hear this kind of talk when visitors walk around the TCGA trade show at the Lubbock Civic Center. Through the years, Texans have always exuded contagious enthusiasm for cotton – even in the face of adversity. It figures to be that way again this time.