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Bumper crop may not translate to bumper profits this year

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Posted at 2:45 PM, Aug 07, 2019
and last updated 2019-08-07 19:33:17-04

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — Cotton farmers are seeing some of their best yields in years this season, but that bumper crop may not translate to bumper profits this year.

"Prices are definitely in the tank,” said farmer Jon Gwynn. “Our crop is not worth nearly as much as it has been recently."

South Texas has some of the top-producing counties for cotton in the state, which is why farmers are frustrated that they are not seeing the financial benefits they want. especially when their land has been so productive.

In fact, farmers say with just one more rain, they would have had the best cotton season South Texas had ever seen.

But this isn't just an issue in Texas: Crops nationwide are being affected, and it stems from overseas.

“China is the biggest part of the puzzle that's given us problems,” Gwynn said. “The trade war that we are currently in with them has greatly affected our export markets."

Farmers are waiting on congress to pass the USMCA – the U.S., Mexico, Canada agreement, which is replacing NAFTA. This agreement looks to create a balanced trade that supports high-paying jobs for American growers.

Thankfully, having such a strong season allowed South Texas farmers to keep the lights on during this uncertain time.

"If it was a below-average yields, coupled with low commodity prices, it'd be a train wreck," said Gwynn.

Farmers are also seeing a drop in sorghum exports.

China had been their biggest customer for the past six years, but the Chinese have stopped purchases because of the trade war.