December futures closed at 61.88 about the same time the board approved the $11.5 million in advancements.

In recommending the progress payment, acting president and CEO Robert W. Norris said, "Calcot is in excellent financial shape, as evidenced by this recommendation, and we look forward to the final settlement of our 76th season in late September."

Calcot made progress payments in January and April after an initial government loan level advance just prior to the beginning of the harvest of the 2002 crop. Calcot's final settlement will be announced at the cooperative's 76th annual meeting, in Visalia, Calif., Sept. 30, followed by desert meetings in Blythe on Oct. 1 and in Tempe on Oct. 2.

The benchmark SJV Acala, color grade 31, inch and an eighth staple length, will receive a four-cent per pound payment, bringing Calcot's advance to date in the Seasonal Pool to 69.20 cents per pound.

Other varieties and their payments include, California Upland, grade 31, two cents, for an advance to date of 63.90 cents; California/Arizona, grade 31, one cent, 61.30 cents; roller-ginned Ultima, grade 31, four cents, 74.20 cents; SJV Pima, grade 2-46, two cents, 85.85; and desert Pima cotton, grade 2-46, two cents, 84.25 cents.

No payments were recommended for Calcot's Call Pool cottons. However, the board approved $202,985 in mote payments, which go to cotton gins.

Payments were expected to reach growers' hands about July 15.

e-mail:hcline@primediabusiness.com