||This is "COTTON NEWS"
from Plains Cotton Growers, Inc.
4517 West Loop 289
Lubbock, Texas 79414
Growers Weighing Options
After Passage of Final Planting Dates
June 14, 2013
By Shawn Wade
It seems that even in the midst of a drought, the High Plains can be counted on to inject some weather-related uncertainty for growers and crop insurance providers trying to figure out what path this year's crop will take. This year's wild card was a fairly widespread rain event the night of June 5 that brought beneficial rainfall to many areas, but also dealt devastating blows to some crops thanks to hail, high winds and blowing sand.
Despite a mixed bag of impact, the storms certainly were not enough to break the ongoing drought, although many fields did receive timely and beneficial moisture. The reality of the situation is that the storms were at best a temporary respite and additional rainfall will need to come soon for any dryland cotton to get to harvest.
It happens that June 5 is also the Federal Crop Insurance program's final planting date for the central tier of High Plains counties. Counties to the north and northwest of Lubbock have a cotton final planting date of May 31, while the southern part of the PCG service area above the Caprock escarpment that borders the region on the east has a June 10 final planting date.
The June 5 storm delivered rain, hail and wind in all of the areas noted above and has created a muddled situation for both growers and crop insurance providers that is just now beginning to be worked out.
All of the acres that are ultimately failed as a result of these storms, or that are failed later on due to non-emergence will have multiple options moving forward, including the planting of uninsured secondary crops.
Once acreage is released for another use, growers can choose to keep their full insurance indemnity on the failed primary crop and then plant an uninsured secondary crop under the insurance program's first-crop/second-crop provisions.
This uninsured secondary crop can be either the same crop as the failed initial crop (i.e.- cotton) or another crop. Producers in many areas south of Lubbock may choose to take a chance on a late planted, and uninsured, cotton or grain crop instead of leaving the ground fallow or planting a cover crop.
For producers who opt to plant cotton a change in summer rainfall patterns and an open fall would give them an opportunity to produce some cotton and also provide much needed support to the region's ginning, warehousing and agribusiness infrastructure.
A review of the federal crop insurance program's Upland Cotton Loss Adjustment Manual shows that the rules haven't changed when it comes to the timing of appraisals on damaged cotton. The current upland cotton loss adjustment procedure requires appraisals be delayed seven days when the damage is caused by hail or blowing sand. This happens to be the most predominant type of damage incurred on June 5.
In general terms, on established crops that sustain sufficient damage, producers have two options.
If the damage occurs prior to the final planting date and the insurance provider determines that it is still practical to replant the crop, growers are expected to attempt to replant the crop up to the established final planting date in their area. If the insurance provider determines that it is not practical to replant before the final planting date an appraisal will be scheduled (usually after the seven-day deferral period) and the status of the crop determined according to established procedures.
Released acreage would be able to be planted to a secondary crop.
If crop damage occurs on or after the final planting date, as was the case for many of the High Plains counties impacted on June 5, the decision tree is a little more definitive.
Most of this cotton was up and growing and therefore eligible for an appraisal on June 13. Many of these acres are now in the process of being evaluated.
For most of the non-irrigated acreage across the High Plains the jury is still out in regard to the impact of the June 5 storms Due to the lack of rainfall over the past six to eight weeks, very little of the non-irrigated crop had achieved a stand.
Most growers with non-irrigated acreage can do little more than try to keep fields from blowing with rotary hoes or sandfighters as they wait to see if the seed they planted will emerge. Appraisals for non-emerged dryland acreage must be delayed until fifteen days after the final planting date.
In counties with a final plant date of May 31, fields that fail to establish a stand due to non-emergence will be able to have acreage evaluated and released after June 15, which is 15 days after the final planting date.
The 15-day waiting period is composed of two parts: the seven-day late planting period for cotton and a mandatory eight-day deferred appraisal period. Together these two periods provide a window during which non-irrigated cotton planted in dry conditions is given an opportunity to establish a stand.
In counties with a final plant date of June 5 or June 10, the same 15-day period will be enforced, making non-emerged cotton acres eligible for release on June 20 and 25, respectively.
As always, non-irrigated crops that emerge prior to evaluation and release by the insurance provider are insured, and are to be managed appropriately.
Farm Service Agency County Committee
Nomination Period Begins Monday, June 17
June 14, 2013
From the Farm Service Agency
Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack announced recently that the nomination period for local Farm Service Agency county committees begins on Monday, June 17.
"I encourage all eligible farmers and ranchers to participate in this year's county committee elections by nominating candidates by the August 1 deadline," said Vilsack. "County committees are a vital link between the farm community and the U.S. Department of Agriculture and provide an opportunity to farmers and ranchers for their opinions and ideas to be heard. We have been seeing an increase in the number of nominations of women and minority candidates and I hope that trend continues."
To be eligible to serve on an FSA county committee, a person must participate or cooperate in a program administered by FSA, be eligible to vote in a county committee election and reside in the local administrative area in which the person is a candidate.
Farmers and ranchers may nominate themselves or others, and organizations representing minorities and women also may nominate candidates. To become a candidate, an eligible individual must sign the nomination form, FSA-669A. The form and other information about FSA county committee elections are available online at http://www.fsa.usda.gov/elections. Nomination forms for the 2013 election must be postmarked or received in the local USDA Service Center by close of business on Aug. 1, 2013. Elections will take place this fall.
While FSA county committees do not approve or deny farm ownership or operating loans, they make decisions on disaster and conservation programs, emergency programs, commodity price support loan programs and other agricultural issues. Members serve three-year terms. Nationwide, there are about 7,800 farmers and ranchers serving on FSA county committees. Committees consist of three to 11 members that are elected by eligible producers.
FSA will mail ballots to eligible voters beginning Nov. 4. The voted ballots are due back to the local county office either via mail or in person by Dec. 2. Newly elected committee members and alternates take office on Jan. 1, 2014.
Cotton USA "Naturally Live Your Life"
Campaign Concludes in Beijing
June 14, 2013
From Cotton Council International
CCI held a double feature celebration for its "Naturally Live Your Life" film series in China. Two "Real Me" short films portrayed the "real" essence of cotton. Ms. Zhang Xinyi and Mr. He Shengming, stars in CCI's first and second films, watched the "Real Me" films with the attendees, including 19 COTTON USA licensees and guests from the China Cotton Association.
The "Naturally Live Your Life" consumer outreach campaign has drawn wide attention from Chinese consumers and the media. The "Naturally Live Your Life" site through Douban (http://site.douban.com/cottonusa/), a social networking platform in China, has generated approximately 493,220 page views with 130,130 unique visitors, as of May 30. It has also attracted more than 13,350 followers, and the campaign's banner advertisements have been viewed 63.1 million times, receiving roughly 176,980 clicks. The COTTON USA mini-site in China, http://www.uscottonlife.com, has also generated 402,620 page views with 156,140 unique visitors.
In total, 71 journalists from 80 media outlets attended the event, including the influential CCTV and BTV, The Beijing News and http://www.sina.com. As of May 30, coverage from online TV and news has generated a total advertising value of $163,400 and an earned advertising value of $544,700.