Cotton Industry Seeks Help
Cotton and peanuts are great rotation partners in competition for a farmer’s land. The National Cotton Council is urging Agriculture Secretary Vilsack to use the authority granted in the 2014 farm law to designate cottonseed as an ‘other oilseed.’
NCC Chairman Sledge Taylor, a Mississippi cotton producer and ginner, said, “This designation is much needed as our industry is facing very difficult economic conditions to say the least. We want to thank all those Congressional members that signed our letter for standing up for U.S. cotton producers who continue to be unfairly disadvantaged by foreign governments highly subsidizing their industries.”
Taylor said the designation for cottonseed to be covered either under the law’s Price Loss Coverage or Agriculture Risk Coverage programs for the purpose of farm safety net participation would provide much-needed stability in the U.S. cotton industry.
The Representatives’ letter noted that, “Lower prices for cotton lint and cottonseed contributed to a decline in average market revenue of more than $150 per harvest acre in 2014 compared to 2013. And current expectations for prices and yields indicate that market revenue will decline by another $24 per acre in 2015, resulting in cotton revenues 25% lower than the average market returns for 2010 through 2013.”
NCC Vice Chairman Shane Stephens, a Mississippi warehouser, recently pointed out that world cotton demand remains 10 percent below the peak observed in 2006 – with a tremendous increase in polyester use largely to blame for the slumping cotton consumption. He stated that polyester prices below 50 cents per pound in key Asian markets are the result of excess cotton production capacity, in many cases fueled by foreign government support.
Texas Peanut Producer to Serve as American Peanut Council Chairman
At the Winter Conference of the American Peanut Council meeting in Atlanta, new 2015-16 officers were elected. After caucuses and elections, the new APC Executive Committee is:
- Otis Johnson, Texas Peanut Producers Board, Chairman
- Nick Melhuish, Algood Food Company, Chairman-Elect
- Charles Birdsong, Birdsong Peanuts, Secretary-Treasurer
- Hugh Nall, Southern Ag Carrier, Immediate Past Chairman
Full Funding of Export Peanut Promotions
Congress has approved and sent to the President and omnibus FY 16 Appropriations bill (H.R. 2029), including agriculture, that will fund the federal government through September 2016. Passage in the House was by an overwhelming vote of 316 to 113. Senate approval was by vote of 65 to 33. When it’s received, President Obama is expected to sign the legislation into law. As approved by Congress, H.R. 2029 includes full funding of $200 million for MAP and $34.5 million for FMD for FY 16, as authorized by the 2014 Farm Bill. This concludes the FY 16 appropriations process. Congress will reconvene in January (the House on January 5 and the Senate on January 11) and will begin work on FY 17 appropriations after the Administration submits its proposed budget.
via Peanut Farm Market News, a peanut hotline service of The Spearman Agency, Tyron Spearman, editor