Market revenues for cotton producers have been on a downward course since 2014 while their production costs have held their own or even risen slightly after tracking producer revenues for a number of years.
The growing gap between revenues and production costs was one of the reasons the National Cotton Council began seeking assistance through such innovative ideas as asking the secretary of agriculture to designate cotton as an "other oilseed" under the 2014 farm bill.
As Gary Adams, the NCC president and CEO explained to those attending the Southern Cotton Ginners Association members at its summer meeting in Little Rock, Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack decided he did not have authority to make such a designation. But he provided an alternative.
That's how the Ginning Cost Share Program came about. Dr. Adams urged farmers who grew cotton in 2015 to visit their county or regional Farm Service Agency offices before the Aug. 5 deadline for the program if they hadn't already done so.
For more information, visit www.cotton.org.