- INDUSTRY COMMENTS
How important is a cotton consultant, and how has
Consultants are a very important part of the cotton industry and all of agriculture. The reason the job has changed so much is because of the dramatic advances we’ve seen in technology, which has totally changed a farmer’s cropping system. Today’s consultant offers advice on more than just cotton, and he’s also conveying information about biotechnology traits, chemical solutions and other things. It is amazing the amount of information that these men pass on to their customers.
I consult on other crops besides cotton – such as rice, soybeans and milo. That’s one of the biggest changes. Plus, the days of the farmer just turning dirt every year are over. This is a business, and the consultant has to help the farmer watch that bottom line. There is definitely a lot more pressure being a consultant these days. We’re always trying to stay updated on everything that will benefit the farmer.
Most farmers really appreciate what we do for them, and they know that we do more than just scout for bugs. They’ll call us year-round with questions about things that they never would ask in the old days. Technology is moving so fast that a farmer hardly has time to learn about the new varieties being offered every two to three years. That’s why we’re a full-service consulting business. We’re there to help the farmer with just about every decision he’ll face during the season except for marketing. I’d like to think that we play an important role in a farming operation with the advice that we offer.
We have a consultant on our farm, and there’s no question how important he is to our operation. When you consider how quickly things change in technology and precision agriculture, you need somebody who stays updated in those areas. Farmers do their best to keep up with farm programs and the price of cotton, but a consultant can come in and really help out in other ways to help make the farm operate better.
We call them PCAs out here, but they perform the same task as a consultant. There is no way I could run a farm without an adviser who watches the crop every day and makes important recommendations for us. How can I say this? They are the eyes and ears for the farmer when it comes to the progress of the crop. They have pretty much stayed in the background, but nowadays they are receiving more recognition, and that’s good. You simply can’t put a price tag on the value that these folks bring to any farming operation.