The 2019 season started “rough” for cotton farmers

Posted at 5:25 AM, Jan 15, 2020
and last updated 2020-01-15 11:13:35-05

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — Storms, government shutdown and trade combined to create a tough year for some South Texas cotton farmers in 2018.

The 2019 season started “rough” for cotton farmers in South Texas. The extended rain and wet conditions with high winds delayed plantings for two months, causing many producers to miss deadlines with their seeds in the ground.

“There was a considerable amount of cotton that got replanted a couple of times during the growing season, and for many growers, it was quite a challenge and came at quite a bit of an expense,” said Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Agent Jason Ott.

Despite a rough start, local farmers are pleased with the result.

“This year we are probably looking ... across all commodities that we produce, probably in the neighborhood of about $150 million is what is going to be generated in production (from) agricultural sales across the county,” said Ott.

That includes grain sorghum, corn, livestock and hay production. And as far as cotton sales go, many area producers are not complaining.

“There are two things that are produced in a cotton crop, you have the lint which has a significant value, along with the cotton seed, and whenever you combine the sales of both lint and cotton seed, we are projecting about $89 million or so is going to be the value of the cotton production here in Nueces County,” Ott said.

So what does this year’s production agriculture sales mean?

“We looked back at some of these numbers from 2011, and at that time farm sales were roughly $100 million and that added an additional $188 million into the local Nueces County economy was the estimate at that time," Ott said. " So as that number has increased, this year you can only expect that multiplier effect to increase in the community as well."

This year's growing season ended up being a tough year that still was fairly productive in terms of the yields.