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Industry’s Emerging Leaders Exude Confidence

If you ever worried about the next generation of cotton industry leaders, you can relax. Maybe that’s an overly confident remark to make in 2015. However, based on what I recently observed at a media panel discussion with members of the new Emerging Leaders Class program, the future has never looked better. This program, now in its third year, is supported by a grant to The Cotton Foundation from Monsanto. The National Cotton Council (NCC) conducts the program’s activities, and the goal is to provide participants a better understanding of how the NCC carries out its mission. Members of this class will participate in three sessions during the next year. The first session involved media training in Memphis and a trip to Monsanto’s corporate headquarters in St. Louis. The second session will consist of a trip to the NCC’s Annual Meeting in February where class members will observe how the organization develops policy. The third session will involve a trip to Washington where the focus will be on policy implementation and international market development. Read More »

Cotton Research at the Learning Center in Scott, Mississippi

Featured New Product Evaluator: James Kamas, from Temple, Texas Monsanto’s Learning Center in Scott, Mississippi, researches and develops new cotton varieties that are tailored to different soils throughout the Cotton Belt. Deltapine NPE James Kamas, of Temple, Texas, says that the Learning Center’s work has contributed to the cotton varieties that he chooses for his farm. Key Takeaways The Learning ... Read More »

Cotton Days in Asia – A True COTTON USA Celebration

By Dahlen Hancock: I recently had the good fortune to travel to Asia to celebrate “Cotton Day” events in Korea, Japan, Taiwan and Thailand as president of Cotton Council International (CCI). Consumers clearly love their cotton. We celebrate Cotton Days in May because this is the time of the year in the United States when we go back to the fields and plant the seeds that give us cotton, the world’s favorite fiber. It’s a wonderful fiber – a true gift from the earth. This year, Cotton Days publicized the COTTON USA “I Love My Cotton” campaign, which encourages consumers and brands alike to share their own reasons for loving cotton. Cotton Days also celebrated the 26th anniversary of COTTON USA, while illustrating the brand’s genuine, passionate and visionary attributes. One of the aspects I remember most about Cotton Days is the consumers’ irresistible energy and enthusiasm for COTTON USA in the Asian markets I visited. I recall telling CCI staff how I wished I could bottle the energy at each event, and take it back with me to Texas, to share it with my fellow U.S. cotton producers, showing them what we do is highly appreciated. The creativity and excitement generated around U.S. cotton is truly wonderful and a big vote of confidence for our industry. Read More »

Developing Nematode-Resistant Cotton Varieties

Featured New Product Evaluator: Chad Brown, from Lubbock, Texas Nematode pressure can cripple a cotton field. Deltapine® NPE Chad Brown of Lubbock, Texas, says that Deltapine® develops a number of nematode-resistant varieties without sacrificing quality. Deltapine determines nematode pressure through soil samples. NPE farmers test and evaluate many varieties before they go to market Yield and grade remain at high ... Read More »

TCGA Concludes Another Successful Meeting

I have attended the Texas Cotton Ginners’ Association Annual Meeting and Trade Show since 2004, and I always enjoy spending time with this group each spring. You’ll recall in last month’s Editor’s Blog that I alluded to how special it is to visit Texas for this meeting – mainly because of the warm hospitality of farmers and ginners there. And this year’s event certainly lived up to expectations. Even with low cotton prices, heavy rains in South Texas and the challenge of the new Farm Bill on everyone’s mind, a lot of optimism was on display at the Lubbock Civic Center and Overton Hotel. You might call it cautious optimism, for lack of a better term. Texas producers and ginners are fully aware that many factors must fall together perfectly to deliver a good cotton crop in the fall. Every financial expenditure must be scrutinized at the farm level, and ginners will be even more diligent to achieve efficiency. Maybe it was the beneficial winter rains and additional precipitation in recent weeks... Read More »

Featured New Product Evaluator: Kevin Gardner, from Macclesfield, North Carolina

As weeds and pests evolve, good cotton breeding is more important than ever. Deltapine NPE Kevin Gardner, of Macclesfield, North Carolina, says the Deltapine breeding program is leading the nation in its research and development of high-performance varieties, helping farms like his ward off root knot nematode and palmer amaranth. Through the Deltapine New Product Evaluator (NPE) Program, noted cotton ... Read More »

The Global Cotton Industry: A Look At Its Past With Insight Into Its Future

For many people, the term “globalization” only has significance as a label for business development over the past 25 years or so. In fact, globalization is nothing new and is typified by the cotton business. The rise of textiles, as the first rung of industrialization, the rise of textiles, particularly in 19th century Europe, would not have been possible without the globalized production of cotton in Africa, Asia, the Americas and elsewhere. Cotton, so it seems, was an essential, if unassuming, raw material of not only textiles but world development as well. “Today, cotton is so ubiquitous that it is hard to see it for what it is: one of mankind’s great achievements,” so declares Sven Beckert, a historian at Harvard University and winner of the prestigious Bancroft Prize, in his newly published Empire of Cotton: A Global History. Even so, as Beckert elaborates, “cotton is as familiar as it is unknown," a prescient observation when we consider the current state of the cotton industry.If you’ve ever wondered why the cotton business behaves as it does, I recommend reading this insightful history. Deeply researched, highly analytical and well written, Beckert successfully relates the importance of cotton to the evolution of global capitalism. Read More »