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July 2016 Cotton Leader

July 30th, 2016

In early July, Cotton Incorporated launched their new consumer-directed #CoolerInCotton video. Watch it here:

Minimize the Impact of Auxin Herbicide Drift with New ‘Focus on Cotton’ Webinar 

The upcoming release of 2,4-D and dicamba resistant cotton cultivars will increase the use of synthetic auxin herbicides and may result in more incidents of improper application and damage due to drift.

A new Focus on Cotton webcast titled “Beltwide Evaluation of the Effect of 2,4-D Drift on Cotton” helps cotton growers, consultants, and other industry experts understand the impact sub-lethal doses of 2,4-D can have on non-tolerant varieties.

This 19-minute talk by Seth Byrd, Assistant Professor and Extension Cotton Specialist at the Texas A&M University AgriLife Extension in Lubbock, provides information that helps users:

  • Avoid common cross-contamination mistakes
  • Time applications during less susceptible growth stages
  • Accurately assess impact of non-lethal damage on yield  

This presentation is freely available courtesy of Cotton Incorporated through the ‘Focus on Cotton’ webcast resource located at the Plant Management Network.

'Focus on Cotton' contains over 40 webcasts on various aspects of cotton crop management. These talks--accessible 24 hours a day, 7 days a week--cover agronomic practices, crop protection, and ag engineering. The website’s Cotton Extension Search tool also provides convenient access to extension resources across all U.S. land-grant universities serving cotton producers.

All of these resources are freely available courtesy of Cotton Incorporated at http://www.plantmanagementnetwork.org/foco.  

Cotton Incorporated National Mall Campaign with Hailee Steinfeld Encourages Back-To-School Shoppers to Shop Cotton - and Makes Cotton Easy to Find!

Cotton Incorporated is heading back to school this season with a new experiential promotion within 30 malls across the United States. The promotion will feature signage of actress/singer Hailee Steinfeld in versatile and on-trend cotton looks. The exhibition space will also include mannequins clad in cotton apparel inspired by the looks worn by Steinfeld, and that are available from retailers within each of the participating properties. Designed to encourage consumers to seek out cotton apparel, the "Find Your Favorite" promotion launched in select malls on July 23 and includes a special gift-with-purchase for qualifying shoppers.

The Cotton Incorporated Lifestyle Monitor™ Survey reveals that the majority of consumers prefer cotton, and assume that the apparel they are buying is actually made of cotton. The "Find Your Favorite" promotion aims to encourage consumers to check the fiber content label when shopping for new favorites for their wardrobe.

"We know consumers love cotton, and we wanted to make it easy for them to find it, especially during the busy back-to-school season," says Kim Kitchings, Senior Vice President of Consumer Marketing, Cotton Incorporated. "This promotion is a great way to show the versatility of cotton clothing -- not only that it's fashionable and trendy, but durable, easy to wear, and easy to care for."

Academy Award-nominated actress Hailee Steinfeld will be featured in the photography and signage for the promotion, sporting fashion-forward cotton-rich ensembles to inspire Millennial consumers.

"There is an authenticity and a versatility to cotton that really speaks to me," says Steinfeld. "It can be casual like a pair of jeans, empowering like workout gear, or an amazing summer dress that's empowering in a different way." Steinfeld will also make a personal appearances at The Woodlands Mall in Woodlands, TX on July 30 (12pm - 2pm).

Finding a favorite outfit like Hailee's won't be the only reason to shop during the promotion. Shoppers will receive a FREE crossbody bag when they spend $200 or more on cotton apparel at any store in the mall. To be eligible, each apparel item purchased must contain at least 50% cotton. The gift-with-purchase bags will be distributed on Saturdays and Sundays from 12pm - 6pm. Limited quantities are available while supplies last.

To learn more about the "Find Your Favorite" mall promotion, including a listing of participating malls, please visit TheFabricOfOurLives.com

Economic Update

Would you rather listen? Click here to hear the economic update.

Recent Price Movement

Cotton prices have been generally stable over the past week, bouncing around within the new range between 71 and 75 cents/lb. There are several factors that can be expected to drive price movement for the next couple months. The first is the weather and the outlook for US production and the second is the international price situation.

US Weather

Hot conditions have ruled across much of the cotton belt. Hot and sunny weather have helped the crop mature, and despite a somewhat slow start to planting, the national pace of squaring and boll set is ahead of the five-year average. Hot conditions have also meant faster evaporation and the moist soil conditions that dominated at the start of the season have given way to droughty conditions in each of the four growing regions. Of course, this is of most concern for areas that are dryland, and the most concentrated area for dryland cotton is West Texas. In West Texas, some precipitation is expected this week.  Heat has been reported as being stressful to the crop, and soaking rainfall would be helpful. Rain has been falling over the Mid-South this week, but more rain would be welcome.

International Prices - India

The recent run in prices looks to have gotten some of its earliest momentum from India. In India, the combination of a higher exports and expectations of a smaller crop pushed prices up more than 25 cents over the past couple months. Between late June and last week, Indian prices increased virtually every single day for a string of nearly one month. Those gains started to unwind late last week and losses have started to build.  Some of the reason for the declines is that the monsoon, which was late and light initially, has begun to catch up.  Nationally, the total for the Indian monsoon thus far is only one percent behind the average. Importantly, the most important cotton producing area is projected to receive heavy rains for the next several days. If those rains arrive as promised, further downward pressure on Indian prices could be expected.

International Prices - China

While prices in India have been falling, they continue to be strong in China. Just last week, Chinese prices rose another 10% and have reached values over a dollar per pound. All of the gains in China have been occurring despite on-going sales by the Chinese government. Throughout the auction period, which began in May, virtually all of the cotton put up for sale has been sold. However, in recent weeks, a rising proportion of those sales has been to traders and not to mills. These traders have been reported as sitting on the supplies they have bought, in hopes that they might be able to sell at a higher price later. None of this helps Chinese mills who have orders to fill and has likely been a factor helping Chinese prices to increase. As we move into the harvest period, and as the new crop becomes available, downward pressure can be expected to emerge. This is not only because the crop will be available, but also will be because the availability of the new crop will likely cause traders to start to sell from their holdings. 

Ultimately, it looks like the support that our futures market may have gotten from international markets may dissipate. 

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