The Foundation continued its important role in industry members’ quest for profitability by assisting in ongoing research and education efforts. The Foundation’s agribusiness members contributed dues of $278,800 in support of 20 general research and education projects in the Foundation’s 2010-11 year. These projects include studies related to herbicide resistance, pest management, ginning, fiber quality, agronomic practices, plant breeding, education and pink bollworm eradication.
U.S. cotton is enjoying a healthy return on investment from these efforts. National Cotton Council staff calculates that taking into account cash and in-kind services, the Foundation’s general projects enjoy a return of about $3 for every dollar devoted to these projects.
Foundation general projects support projects ranging from herbicide resistance to this gin emission research.
Some Foundation members continue to go above and beyond their dues support by channeling funds toward special projects – efforts that are helping the NCC address industry’s needs.
One of those endeavors, “Vision 21,” features three phases which cover detailed demographic consumer studies in China and India, cotton life cycle analysis, and cotton flow research. The flow component was completed in 2010 and anticipated completion of the other two is early 2011.
A learning module and educational video were completed for Herbicide Resistant Weeds project. Technical training material was developed to aid in detection and management of resistant weeds and to assist proactive training for locations with no known herbicide resistance problem to date. These tools are helping the NCC in its quest to provide producers with the latest information on managing for resistance and how to avoid its occurrence.
Not to be overlooked was the Foundation’s ongoing support of vital NCC communications vehicles, including the Cotton’s Week newsletter, AgDay Cotton’s Week and the Cotton eNews electronic newsletter. Foundation underpinning of the NCC’s web server made it possible for the NCC to post multiple cotton-related educational materials, including streaming video.
Through the years, the Foundation consistently has provided targeted assistance to short- and long-term industry priorities and needs. The Foundation has proven to be a particularly flexible and resilient 501(c)3 organization – even during periods of economic downturn. From the producer standpoint, it is reassuring to know that U.S. cotton can rely on solid fortification as it seeks to thrive in today’s highly competitive fiber market.