A NCC leadership team visited China on June 9-19 to gather information from Chinese cotton industry officials and update them on key aspects of the US cotton industry.

The US cotton industry delegation was the fifth to visit China since the establishment of the US-China Cotton Leadership Exchange Program by the NCC and the China Cotton Assoc. (CCA). This visit, coordinated by Cotton Council International (CCI), the NCC’s export promotions arm, was part of the ongoing exchange between the two countries as was established by a Memorandum of Understanding signed in ’06 that promised cooperation between the countries’ cotton industries.

The NCC delegation was led by American Cotton Producers (ACP) Chairman Clyde Sharp, a Roll, Ariz., producer. Other members included NCC Secretary-Treasurer Sledge Taylor, a Como, Miss., producer and ginner; NCC Director Allen McLaurin, a Laurel Hill, N.C., producer; ACP Vice Chairman Barry Evans, a Kress, Texas, producer; ACP Oklahoma Chairman Danny Robbins, an Altus producer; Farmer’s Compress CEO Ron Harkey, a Lubbock, Texas, warehouseman; CCI Director Kent Fountain, a Surrency, Ga., ginner and warehouseman; CCI Director Hank Reichle, a coop marketer with Staplcotn, Greenwood, Miss.; and NCC Delegate Jeff Johnson, a merchant with Allenberg Cotton, Cordova, Tenn.

While in Beijing, delegation members heard reports from the CCA, the China National Textile and Apparel Council, and Chinatex. In Henan Province, they met with the Henan Provincial Cotton Assoc. and visited the Zhengzhou Commodity Exchange. They also toured the Zhengzhou #1 textile mill along with the Cotton Research Institute. In Shanghai, they toured the CCI and Cotton Incorporated offices, met with the Entry-Exit Inspection and Quarantine Bureau and visited the Transwin Logistics Company, a bonded port warehouse.

Sharp said that one of the visit’s primary purposes was to convey to key Chinese cotton officials the US cotton industry’s continued commitment to deliver high quality cotton in a timely manner.

“China is the United States’ largest customer of raw cotton and we are committed to meeting their needs in terms of both quality and timely shipments,” Sharp stated. “It was apparent that the Chinese greatly appreciated our visiting them in their country and they expressed their desire for doing business with the U.S. cotton industry. This visit gave us the necessary platform to discuss issues surrounding U.S. raw cotton quality and reinforced our continued commitment to ongoing dialogue between our two countries.”