Last week, the USDA Acreage report showed 11.4 million acres of cotton have been planted in the U.S. this year – up one million acres over 2013. This week’s Crop Progress report (dated July 6) shows that those cotton acres are running slightly behind last year in terms of squaring and boll set, but are in far better condition at this time than the 2013 crop.
The Crop Progress report showed that more than half – 53 percent – of the 2014 crop is now squaring. That’s a 17 percent increase in the past week, yet seven percentage points behind the same time last year. Double digit percentage increases were reported in most cotton-producing states, with the largest weekly changes coming in North Carolina (up 28 percent), California (up 20 percent) and Georgia and Texas (both up 18 percent).
Twelve percent of the 2014 crop is now setting bolls, with the largest reported percentages coming from Louisiana, Arizona, California, Oklahoma and South Carolina. The category is currently running four percentage points behind last year’s numbers.
Overall crop condition is unchanged over the past week. Eighty-seven percent of the cotton acres are rated fair, good or excellent, with the good and excellent ratings ticking up slightly. Acres rated poor or very poor also remain unchanged at 13 percent.
This crop is off to an outstanding start over the same time period in 2013, when only 76 percent of the crop was rated fair to excellent and 24 percent was rated poor to very poor.