By admin       2018-03-08

Cotton producers here and across the Cotton Belt are applauding the announcement this past weekend by Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue that the USDA will offer a Cotton Ginning Cost Share program for the 2016 crop. It will certainly help,� Lamesa Cotton Growers President David Zant of Ackerly told the Press-Reporter by phone on Monday. That will help offset some expenses. Cotton producers may receive a cost-share payment based on their 2016 cotton acres, as reported to the USDA�s Farm Service Agency (FSA), multiplied by 20 percent of the average ginning cost for each production region. With the average ginning cost listed by the USDA as $98.26 for Texas, farmers here should receive $19.65 per acre. Sign-up for the program will begin next Monday, March 12, and run through May 11. FSA will mail letters and pre-filled applications to all eligible cotton producers, according to a USDA news release. As with a similar program previously offered for the 2015 cotton crop, payments will be capped at $40,000 per producer. Cotton producers must meet conservation compliance provisions, be actively engaged in farming, and have adjusted gross income not exceeding $900,000. Jeremy Brown, president of the Dawson County Farm Bureau, said the one-time payment will be particularly beneficial to the many farmers who are at a break-even situation, or worse, financially. Many farmers will use it to pay off some long-term debt or short-term debt, or put it back into their operation,� Brown said.

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