Farmers at Cotton Convention Concerned for Future

Farmers from across the region who visited the Civic Center, Thursday, for the 107th annual Cotton Ginners' Association Convention were concerned with much more than the new equipment on display.
By Ashley Hinson

LUBBOCK, TX -- Farmers from across the region who visited the Civic Center, Thursday, for the 107th annual Cotton Ginners' Association Convention were concerned with much more than the new equipment on display.

The severe drought covering parts of Texas, New Mexico and Oklahoma have cotton producers like Danny Davis on edge.

"This long term multi-year drought that we're in, it's consumed everybody," said Davis.

He traveled 250 miles from his farm in Oklahoma to explore the latest technology in cotton ginning and to shake hands with people in a similar struggle.

"The support industry our gins, our equipment dealerships, fertilizer dealerships, there's nobody that's not touched by the drought," said Davis.  "It has not been a good Christmas the past three or four years."

Garrett Eagle with Shoppas Material Handling typically supplies farmers like Davis with rental tractors for six months, but the drought has cut that cotton ginning season and Eagle's profits in half.

"They don't have the revenue on buying new equipment," said Eagle.  "We're seeing a decrease in parts and service because they're not wearing and tearing the unit up like they generally would in a longer season."

So although Davis was hoping to get some insight on more efficient equipment at the convention, without precipitation he and the rest of the agricultural community will never get back on track.

"There's nothing we can do," Davis said.  "When it gets down to it we're dependent on the good Lord and that's where we're at right now."

The cotton convention will run again Friday at the Civic Center from 9am - 2:30pm and admission is free. 
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