Nine cotton producers from Arizona and California will see cotton operations in Louisiana and Mississippi on Aug. 1-5 as part of the NCC’s Producer Information Exchange (PIE) program that is sponsored by Bayer CropScience via a grant to The Cotton Foundation.
The participants include: Arizona – Brandon Brooks, Phoenix; Michael Brooks, Goodyear; and J.L. Echeverria, Paul Hayden, and Chad Odom, all of Buckeye; California -- Kenny Carvalho, Tranquillity; Darryl Mendes, Riverdale; Mark Rosa, Hanford; and Geoff Toledo, Visalia.
The group will begin their tour on Aug. 1 in Louisiana with tours of the Panola Pepper Company and the Louisiana Cotton Museum in Lake Providence and visits to area cotton farms. The next day they will visit the Panola Company, Ltd. cotton operation in Newellton and tour other area cotton farms before being briefed on “The Great Flood of 2011” by the US Army Corps of Engineers in Vicksburg, MS.
The next three days will be spent in Mississippi. On Aug. 3, the group will visit Bayer CropScience’s facility in Leland and hear a presentation on “Liberty Link and Weed Resistance” from Gunnison producer Kenneth Hood before getting a tour of the Mississippi River from Delta Wildlife and Delta F.A.R.M. officials. The next day’s itinerary in Leland includes an overview of Delta cotton production and of the Delta Council; a tour of the Stoneville Research Complex and the Delta Branch Experiment Station, and individual farm tours in Washington County. The tour concludes on Aug. 5 with visits to Staplcotn Cooperative in Greenwood and Ray Makamson’s cotton farm in Itta Bena.
Mid-South producers went to California’s San Joaquin Valley in mid-July during the first of four PIE tours this season. Southwest producers will visit Georgia, Alabama and Florida on Aug. 7-12; and Southeast producers will see operations in W. Texas and S. Texas on Aug. 21-26.
Upon completion of this year’s four tours, the PIE program will have exposed more than 900 U.S. cotton producers to innovative production practices in regions different than their own.