facebook_pixel

Relative Prices Driving Acreage Decisions

Each year, the National Cotton Council surveys producers as to their acreage intentions for the coming year. The survey, mailed in mid-December to approximately 10,000 producers, asks growers to give their acreage for cotton and competing crops in 2008 and their intended acreage for 2009. The survey results, which were collected through mid-January, indicate that U.S. cotton producers intend to plant 8.11 million acres of cotton this spring, down 14% from 2008. Total cotton area is comprised of Upland at 7.97 million acres and ELS at 142,000.

The survey suggests that all regions intend to reduce Upland cotton planting area from last season. The West and Mid-South show the largest percentage drops of 31% and 23%, respectively. Smaller reductions of 18% and 9% are expected in the Southeast and Southwest.

Across the Southeast, Florida was the only state to indicate an increase in cotton, which appears to be coming at the expense of peanuts. Alabama reported the largest percentage reduction at 33%, followed by Virginia at 23% and Georgia at 17%. These three states’ responses showed shifts to corn and soybeans. South Carolina and North Carolina plan cutbacks of 18% and 12%, respectively, as growers shift to soybeans.

Results for the Mid-South states show declines in the 25% range, except for Tennessee’s ― down 4%. The majority of growers’ intentions are to shift acres to soybeans.

Texas growers expressed reducing area by 9% to 4.5 million acres. The other regions’ reductions of relatively more acreage imply Texas’ share of the total upland area is expanding, now at 57%, up from 54%. Only modest adjustments were shown for Kansas (up 7%) and Oklahoma (down 2%).

The Western region showed a 31% reduction. California Upland planted area intentions represented 55% losses, stemming from concerns over water availability, and some producers’ opting to grow specialty crops. Survey respondents also revealed declines in Arizona (down 7%) and New Mexico (down 40%) upland area.

Adjustments in the four states producing ELS cotton indicated mixed reviews with declines in California and New Mexico, partially offset by gains in Arizona and Texas.

Assuming average abandonment and state-level trend yields, a 12.76 million bale crop is expected, compared to 2008’s total production of 13.04 million bales.

Inputs, Weather

It is important to remember that the survey captures the intentions at the time the responses are collected. Those intentions can change between now and planting time as market conditions change. In addition to relative crop prices, growers will take into account changes in fuel and fertilizer costs, which are expected to be $50 to $100 per acre lower this year than last. Also, weather and agronomic considerations will factor into growers’ decisions.

Since the survey was conducted, the competitive landscape has changed, primarily due to weaker corn and soybean prices. USDA’s latest grain estimates, showing an increase in stock levels, highlights the pressures on demand. Currently, the ratio of crude oil at $45 per barrel to corn at $4 per bushel does not foretell profitable ethanol production. Soybean prices are also closely watching weather developments in South America. If recent rains allow their crop prospects to improve, soybean prices could remain under pressure. Movements in cotton prices relative to corn and soybeans have the greatest potential to affect acreage in the Southeast and Mid-South.

In the early months of 2009, the U.S. cotton industry is facing a host of economic challenges. The intricate linkages between the cotton market, other commodity markets and the general economy have never been more evident. Volatility has become the rule rather than the exception. While the NCC’s annual survey has proven to be an excellent barometer of the growers’ mindset, we must remember that acreage decisions will continue to be a moving target in the current environment.

Leave a Reply

Planting Stories
Planting

Conservation Tillage Can Pay Off in Georgia

October 24, 2017

Conservation tillage saves time and money and improves the soil, but only a small percentage of Georgia farmers currently use the system.

Planting

Seven Tips for Successful Cotton Planting

April 19, 2017

According to NC State Cotton Specialist Guy Collins, growers need to keep seven tips in mind at planting to help ensure a successful cotton stand.

Planting

More Cotton, Less Grain Likely in Texas in 2017

February 24, 2017

Cotton acres in Texas will likely increase this season, as producers seek an alternative to grains.

Planting

Optimize Irrigation and Fertility in High Plains Cotton

February 21, 2017

With many producers in the northern High Plains considering cotton this year, optimizing irrigation and fertility will be important to their bottom line.

Planting

Field Prep Underway for South TX Planting

February 2, 2017

With spring planting a few weeks away, growers in south Texas are making good progress on field preparation.

Planting

Cover Crop Costs Recovered on Rolling Plains Cotton

December 28, 2016

Irrigated cotton producers on the Texas Rolling Plains could potentially be reaping more dollars per acre if they include a cover crop on their continuous cotton.

Planting

Increasing Planter Capacity: Go Faster or Wider?

October 11, 2016

New technologies are giving growers more options to speed up planting. The best solution is the one better suited for your field shape and size.

Around The Gin
Product News

Bayer Looking for FiberMax One Ton Club Growers for 2017

November 16, 2017

Cotton growers who produce an average of 2,000 lb/A on 20 or more acres planted to FiberMax varieties in 2017 are eligible to be part of the 13th annual FiberMax One Ton Club.

Product News

Monsanto Delays NemaStrike for Additional Review

November 2, 2017

After finding cases of skin irritation, Monsanto is pulling its nematode seed treatment NemaStrike for further product review.

Product News

Intrepid Trio: Naturally Balanced Nutrition in Every Granule

November 1, 2017

Intrepid Trio contains three essential nutrients for cotton plants.

Product News

Save Time, Increase Efficiencies with Mixmate

November 1, 2017

Mixmate from Praxidyn is a precision chemical mixing system for small farms to large enterprises.

Product News

Crumpler Ironworks & Fabrication

November 1, 2017

Crumpler Ironworks & Fabrication is committed to providing the highest level of service, honesty and integrity, regardless of project size.

Product News

Delivering Proven Performance Across the Cotton Belt

November 1, 2017

Seed varieties, traits and crop protection products from Bayer deliver proven performance to growers across the Cotton Belt.

Product News

Growers Continue to Count on Americot and NexGen

November 1, 2017

Americot is dedicated to working with cotton growers throughout the Cotton Belt to provide elite performing NexGen varieties within the marketplace.

Product News

Deere Adds New Narrow Track Versions to 9RX Tractor Lineup

November 1, 2017

John Deere has added three new 9RX Narrow Track Tractors, expanding its lineup of high-horsepower machines.

Latest News
Planting

Conservation Tillage Can Pay Off in Georgia

October 24, 2017

Conservation tillage saves time and money and improves the soil, but only a small percentage of Georgia farmers currently use the system.

Planting

Timely Rains Boost Panhandle Cotton

August 11, 2017

Timely and widespread rains in the Texas Panhandle arrived in time to help put fields on track for a good season.

Planting

TX Cotton Growers Watching Moisture Levels Closely

May 25, 2017

There is some concern that soil moisture in 2017 could be problematic, especially for Texas dryland cotton producers.

Planting

Seven Tips for Successful Cotton Planting

April 19, 2017

According to NC State Cotton Specialist Guy Collins, growers need to keep seven tips in mind at planting to help ensure a successful cotton stand.

Planting

More Cotton, Less Grain Likely in Texas in 2017

February 24, 2017

Cotton acres in Texas will likely increase this season, as producers seek an alternative to grains.

Planting

Optimize Irrigation and Fertility in High Plains Cotton

February 21, 2017

With many producers in the northern High Plains considering cotton this year, optimizing irrigation and fertility will be important to their bottom line.

Planting

Field Prep Underway for South TX Planting

February 2, 2017

With spring planting a few weeks away, growers in south Texas are making good progress on field preparation.

Planting

Cover Crop Costs Recovered on Rolling Plains Cotton

December 28, 2016

Irrigated cotton producers on the Texas Rolling Plains could potentially be reaping more dollars per acre if they include a cover crop on their continuous cotton.

Planting

Increasing Planter Capacity: Go Faster or Wider?

October 11, 2016

New technologies are giving growers more options to speed up planting. The best solution is the one better suited for your field shape and size.

Planting

Managing Cotton after Uneven Emergence

June 13, 2016

Mississippi State University specialists offer guidelines for managing cotton fields with uneven plant maturity.

Planting

Guidelines for Replanting Decisions

May 24, 2016

There are no definitive guidelines for making replant decisions. But a list of factors to consider may help make those decisions a bit easier.

Planting

Improved Soil Moisture for Most Texas Cotton Fields

May 4, 2016

Improved soil moisture in most cotton fields in Texas are pushing growth and maturity in early-planted acres and are setting up the state’s northern acres for good planting conditions.

Planting

USDA Projects 9.56 Million Cotton Acres in 2016

March 31, 2016

USDA’s March 31 Prospective Plantings report projects that U.S. cotton growers will plant 9.56 million acres in 2016 – an 11% increase over last year.

Planting

March Rainfall Could Mean More Cotton Acreage

March 29, 2016

More acres may be shifting back to cotton in 2016. For producers who may be planting cotton for the first time in several years, variety selection can be a formidable challenge.

Planting

Preplant Burndown Time in NC

March 8, 2016

Mid-March through early April is the ideal time for preplant burndown applications in North Carolina cotton fields.