By: Christi Short, Southwest Regional Communications Manager
As spring carries on, so does the unknown market conditions and volatile prices, and weather for that matter! Our friends in the Far West states are changing planting decisions based on those prices, or at least having conversations about alternative options. Out in California, producers are usually right in the middle of cotton planting right now. After speaking to a few growers in the San Joaquin Valley, they have received some untimely spring rains, which have really delayed their plantings. Field conditions are not able to dry up fast enough to get equipment in before it rains again. This can cause quite a problem as we all know when you’re trying to get acres planted by a certain date. Statewide, their cotton acres will be down significantly, probably around twenty percent. Fortunately, growers in California have some different crop options to look at that might provide a better investment or price cushions. But of course, this isn’t true for all growers, and definitely doesn’t soften the blow for cotton growers.
Moving through to Arizona, they are still quite some time away from starting planting, for most of the state. Yuma, Arizona, much like South Texas, is one of the first areas to start planting cotton across the Cotton Belt. There is still some time for final planting decisions to be made for the rest of the state, but we are thinking there will be a decrease in what was originally planned because the price of cotton is so unfavorable. These growers are considering other crop options that might provide a better income.
In New Mexico, they are looking to start planting soon! Even with the low prices, estimated acreage will stay about the same. In the cotton-growing areas, there aren’t always a lot of different options for growers. And, with other crop markets not looking much better than cotton, several growers I’ve visited with have indicated their acres will stay the same as they originally stated at the beginning of the year. They are eager to get started, after all, that’s what the spring is for- planting!
All-in-all, I think our entire cotton-growing community is sharing the same sentiment over unsteady and unfavorable prices. But, with some good weather, this can be a great season.
California and Arizona have had some changes with their previously scheduled annual meetings. The California Cotton Growers and Ginners Association was planning to hold their annual meeting in Visalia, CA, on May 13th. This meeting has been cancelled, and all business that would have been conducted during this meeting will take place at another board meeting of CCGGA a little later this year. Arizona Cotton Growers and Ginners Associations have moved the dates of their annual meeting to July 8-9, 2020, in Flagstaff, AZ, please mark your calendars accordingly if you are in the cotton growing communities in these states.
Looking forward to seeing you guys soon!
The anecdotal information contained herein is believed to be reliable; however, The Cotton Board cannot guarantee its accuracy or completeness. The information contained herein should not be considered advice and should not be relied upon for the purpose of making decisions.