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In This Issue
Delta’s Early Harvest Shows Good Potential
Manage Modules Properly For Quality & Efficiency
All Signs Point Toward Record Texas Crop
Cotton's Agenda: Staying on Top
What Mills Want: Quality Affects Fiber Decisions
Editor's Note: 2010 Harvest Season Feels A Bit Different
Specialists Speaking
Cotton Ginners Marketplace: It’s Time To Get Ready For Round Modules At The Gin
Cotton Consultants Corner: Last Nail For The Boll Weevil
Industry Comments
Web Poll: Poll Says Crop Rocks
My Turn: Texas Ginners Gearing Up

It’s Time To Get Ready For Round Modules At The Gin

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Many producers are using the John Deere 7760 cotton picker with the on-board module builder that forms round modules weighing between 5,000 and 6,000 pounds or three to four bales per module.

When John Deere developed the on-board module builder, it had a few options in mind on how the round modules would be handled at the gin but may not have envisioned all the innovative ideas that have evolved since. Many ginners are struggling to determine how to handle the rounds at the gin without losing capacity.  

When selecting a round module handling system, ginners should:

• Select an unwrapping system with enough automation to feed the gin without limiting ginning capacity, with considerations for the feeder configuration and gin yard layout.  

• Have additional well-trained personnel on the module feeder to handle the smaller rounds and plastic wrap in a safe and effective manner.

• Provide safeguards to prevent plastic wrap from entering into the feeder and the gin.

There are several options that have evolved. They include a completely automated system that locates and cuts the plastic wrap at the recommended spot and the automated module dump which pours the cotton out of the module wrap. Additionally, there are several semi-automated systems which allow the cover to be cut and removed while on the module feeder, and then there is the simple box cutter on a stick. All these systems require manual removal of the plastic wrap from the cotton.  

There are also options in positioning the module either parallel (the sausage) or perpendicular (the wagon wheel) to the feeder head. Systems that use the sausage method must build up side panels on the feeder floor to prevent spillage. Systems using the wagon wheel can get by without additional sides on the feeder floor. This works particularly well with walking floor feeders.

Over the past years, gins have begun to use the module feeder as a feed control and in some cases eliminated the feed control or accumulator completely. With rounds, an accumulator is essential to help smooth out the uneven distribution of cotton on the module feeder.

Don’t Forget To Modify Chains

It also is important that gins modify the seven or eight  middle chains on module trucks with puncture-resistant lugs to prevent tearing wraps when handling rounds. Tearing the wrap will reduce its strength and may cause it to rupture during handling.

John Deere has provided some ginning recommendations and other helpful information on its Web site(
) to assist producers and ginners in making timely and informed decisions.

– Thomas D. Valco, USDA Cotton Technology Transfer. For additional information, go to Contact Valco in Stoneville, Miss., at via email or call (662) 686-5255. Each month Valco offers timely updates and information in the Cotton Ginners Marketplace section about all facets of cotton ginning.

Dates Announced for TCGA, Mid-South Gin Show Events

The dates have been set for two important gin meetings and trade shows in 2011. The Southern Ginners Association  annual meeting and the Mid-South Farm & Gin Show are scheduled for Feb. 24-26 in Memphis. The TCGA annual meeting and trade show are set for March 31-April 1 at the Lubbock Civic Center.

For more information go to or

Message From Curtis Stewart
(Chairman, Joint Cotton Industry Bale Packaging Committee)

Even though the 2010 ginning season has started for some of us, I want to take this opportunity to remind my fellow ginners of the importance of using bale packaging materials approved by the Joint Cotton Industry Bale Packaging Committee (JCIBPC) and USDA’s Commodity Credit Corporation (CCC).

The Specifications for Cotton Bale Packaging Materials are published by the National Cotton Council on its Web site and can be downloaded from that site. The USDA form CCC-809 (Cooperating Ginner’s Bagging and Bale Ties Certification and Agreement) is a contract between ginners and CCC to use only materials that comply with the specifications published by the JCIBPC.

Form CCC-809 can be downloaded from the eForms page of the USDA Web site. With the USDA-CCC agreement in mind, ginners are encouraged to purchase packaging materials from reputable sources and to make sure their bale packaging systems function properly before their first bale is ginned.

We ginners should remember that bales wrapped and tied with materials other than those meeting the JCIBPC specifications can cause producers to be ineligible for CCC market assistance loans and other farm program benefits.

Know The Rules

Because of the loan eligibility requirement, you need to know that an amendment to the specifications added an ultraviolet ray (UV) inhibitor (light stabilizers) requirement for polyethylene (PE) film bags in 2010.

That amendment requires all polyolefin (plastic) bale bag manufacturers to include UV inhibitor additives in their bags. When the change was made, the JCIBPC wanted to make it clear that outside storage was not the intent of the change, and the committee made the following statement:

“With no endorsement of outside storage, the JCIBPC recommends that all polyolefin (polyethylene (PE) film and polypropylene (PP) fabric) bale bags contain the same ultraviolet (UV) ray inhibitors (stabilizers).”

The new UV inhibitor applies only to bags that were manufactured after the specifications were approved by USDA and published by the NCC in June. You may use PE film bags carried over from 2009 in 2010 even if the bags do not contain UV stabilizers.

One proven way to make sure bale packaging materials conform to the committee’s specifications is to ask for proof that the requirements have been met. That proof can be provided in the form of a certificate of analysis stating that the packaging material complies with the published specifications for that material.

While a list of active bale packaging distributors is not published, the “JCIBPC Lists of Approved Manufacturers” can be viewed on the right hand side of the NCC Bale Packaging page by going to the Technical section on the NCC’s home page.

Some ginners may have the opportunity to use materials in JCIBPC experimental test programs this year. Because these materials may not meet current JCIBPC specifications, USDA CCC will grant a variance for the materials included in those approved test programs.

If a firm states that a packaging material is in a JCIBPC experimental test program, the claim can be verified by reviewing the “Participating Gin Warehouse Form” link on the NCC Bale Packaging page. Go to the link for “2010 Participating Gin Warehouse Gin Warehouse Forms” for either bagging or bale ties at the bottom of the page.

Please direct your bale packaging and experimental test program questions to Dale Thompson at the National Cotton Council in Memphis, Tenn., at or (901) 274-9030.

Cotton’s Calendar


Oct. 13 – PCG Quarterly Board Meeting, Lubbock, Texas.
Oct. 25-26 – Pink Bollworm Meeting, Tempe, Ariz.
Nov. 9-11 – CCI Sourcing Summit, Los Angeles, Calif.
Nov. 9-11 – Cotton Inc. Crop Mgt. Seminar, Memphis, Tenn.
Nov. 11 – Delta Council Board Meeting, Stoneville, Miss.
Dec. 7-9 – Cotton Board/Cotton Inc., joint meeting, TBD.
Dec. 15 – Staplcotn Board Meeting, Greenwood, Miss.


Jan. 4-7 – Beltwide Cotton Conferences, Atlanta, Ga.
Jan. 12 – PCG Quarterly Board Meeting, Lubbock, Texas.
Jan. 19-22 – Southern-Southeastern Meeting, Savannah, Ga.
Jan. 26 –  Ga. Cotton Commission Annual Meeting, Tifton, Ga.
Feb. 4-6 – NCC Annual Meeting, San Antonio, Texas.
Feb. 24 – Southern Ginners Annual Meeting, Memphis, Tenn.
Feb. 25-26 – Mid-South Farm & Gin Show, Memphis, Tenn.
Mar. 16 – Staplcotn Board Meeting, Greenwood, Miss.
March 31-April 1 – TCGA Annual Meeting, Lubbock, Texas.
June 15 – Staplcotn Board Meeting, Greenwood, Miss.
Aug. 24-26 – NCC Mid-Year Board Meeting, Santa Fe, N.M.
Sept. 21 – Staplcotn Annual Meeting, Greenwood, Miss.


Jan. 3-6 – Beltwide Cotton Conferences, Orlando, Fla.
Jan. 22-25 – Southern-Southeastern, Hilton Head, S.C.
Feb. 10-12 – NCC Annual Meeting, Memphis, Tenn.
March 29-30 – TCGA Annual Meeting, Lubbock, Texas.
Aug. 22-24 – NCC Mid-Year Board meeting, Memphis, Tenn.


Jan. 7-10 – Beltwide Cotton Conferences, San Antonio, Texas.
Feb. 8-10 – NCC Annual Meeting, Memphis, Tenn.
April 4-5 – TCGA Annual Meeting, Lubbock, Texas.
Aug. 21-23 – NCC Mid-Year Board Meeting, New Orleans, La.


Feb. 7-9 – NCC Annual Meeting, Washington, D.C.
April 3-4 – TCGA Annual Meeting, Lubbock, Texas.


April 9-10 – TCGA Annual Meeting, Lubbock, Texas.

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