Twelve cotton producers from the Southeast will see cotton and other agriculture-related operations in Texas on August 17-21 as part of the 2014 National Cotton Council's Producer Information Exchange (P.I.E.).
Sponsored by Bayer CropScience through a grant to The Cotton Foundation, the P.I.E. program is in its 26th year of helping its U.S. producer participants improve yields and fiber quality. The program aims to help cotton producers boost their overall operation's efficiency by: 1) gaining new perspectives in such fundamental practices as land preparation, planting, fertilization, pest control, irrigation and harvesting and 2) observing the unique ways in which their innovative peers are using current technology.
The Southwest tour participants are: Alabama – Rich Lindsey, Jr., and Brandon Young, both of Centre; Georgia – Jason Cox, Pelham, Russ Williams, Leary, and Austin Warbington, Pinehurst; North Carolina – William Dunlow, Roanoke Rapids, and Mark Grant, Garysburg; South Carolina – Dean Hutton, Holly Hill, Stewart Perrow, St. Matthews, and Lee Rogers, Bishopville; Virginia –Wyatt Cox, Waverly, and William Kirven, IV, Darlington.
The Southwest tour will begin on August 18 in Lubbock where the group will tour Bayer CropScience's research facility, hear presentations on Texas cotton production and on Texas A&M University's Texas Cotton Improvement Program at the Plains Cotton Growers Association office and then visit PYCO Industries. They also will tour Vardeman Farms in nearby Slaton before concluding the day with a visit to the Caprock Winery in Lubbock.
The next day, the group will tour Farmers Cooperative Compress and then get a presentation on electronic marketing at Plains Cotton Cooperative Association before visiting the Lubbock Feedlot and Back to Nature Inc. They also will tour Mimms Farm in Acuff.
The next two days the group will be in the state's Coastal Bend area. On August 20 in Corpus Christi, they will visit Stover Equipment Company, the Gulf Compress, the Port of Corpus Christi, Gatefront, LLC, and the USDA Agricultural Marketing Service's cotton classing facility. They also will see the Edcot Gin Coop in Odem, the Gregory Gin in Gregory and tour individual farms in the Coastal Bend area.
The tour concludes on August 21 with a visit to Kingsville for an update on the South Texas Boll Weevil Program. The group also will tour the Texas Parks and Wildlife Fish Hatchery in Corpus Christi.
In this season's other P.I.E. tours, Mid-South producers saw operations in California on July 13-17; Far West producers traveled to Arkansas, Missouri and Tennessee on July 27-August 1; and Southwest producers visited North Carolina and Virginia on August 3-8.