here to ask Sid Hopkins
a question or submit a comment about this month’s Cotton
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AVICTA Complete Pak is a promotional combination of three separately
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in the U.S. and other countries. Cruiser® insecticide is protected
by several pending patent applications and granted patents in
the U.S. and worldwide, including U.S. Patent Nos. 5852012 and
6844339. ©2007 Syngenta Crop Protection, Inc.,
P.O. Box 18300, Greensboro, NC 27419. Important: Always read and
follow label instructions before buying or using these products.
Hopkins, PhD, BCE
BS, MA, PhD (Entomology) – Texas A&M University
• Established consulting company in 1986
• Other members of HAS, Inc. include:
Bradley Hopkins, MS (Entomology) – Texas A&M
Mike Treacy, PhD (Entomology) – Texas A&M
Holly Hopkins, BS (Biology) – Texas A&M
• I love spending time with my family (Holly, Brad, Bethany
and Brad’s wife, Deanna) and trying to keep the fish
population in check in the local bays.
In this Q&A interview, Hopkins talks about a crop
consultant’s challenges and rewards in today’s ag
What services do
you offer and how do they contribute to your farmer client’s profitability?
We are independent consultants
and offer a full range
of integrated crop management services. This includes
insect, weed and disease management, variety selection,
fertility, and crop modeling. We provide these services
primarily on cotton and grain sorghum, but also work with
corn, wheat, sunflowers, canola and whatever else pops
up. About one third to one-half of our time during the
growing season is spent conducting research on row
crops, vegetables and citrus on our research farms in
the Lower Gulf Coast and the Lower Rio Grande Valley.
This allows us to look at new products and systems for
several years before they are available for our clients.
Additionally, my son Brad has been working in the field
with us for 10 years. While earning his MS and PhD, he
studied the species composition, biology and control of
the stinkbug pests found in the Lower Gulf Coast. The
species composition and their management are unique
to our area. Brad is currently working on the mechanisms
of resistance in the cotton bollworm. Mike, who also works
with us, received his MS and PhD while doing research
here. He left to work as leader of global insecticide discovery for
a major agricultural company and returned
to work with us about five years ago. He offers a wealth
of information on pests, pesticides and toxicology as well
as field experience. I have worked in this area for 24 years,
so I have the local field experience. We believe all of this
works together to help our clients increase their profitability.
What have you found
to be the best approach to processing information/
technology and sharing it with your farmer clients?
We primarily rely on research
that we conduct in our local area and try to disseminate it through
presentations at local, state and national meetings. We also hold meetings
to provide this information to local producers, while providing them
an opportunity to pick up needed CEU credits.
How would you describe
the future role of the cotton consultant?
My best guess is that processors
will eventually run the show. They will set the production parameters,
and we will help the farmers meet them. Not too glamorous.
What has been the
most rewarding part of your profession?
The rewards have been two-fold.
Seeing my clients stay in business and be successful and hoping we had
a small part in it is very satisfying. However, having had the time
during the off-season to spend with my children as they grew up was
the biggest reward.