The destructive one-two punch of hurricanes Harvey and Irma failed to spoil the bumper 2017 cotton crop, meaning dairy farmers will still have access to an ample supply of cottonseed. Roughly 4 million tons of the 6.7 million tons of cottonseed produced this year will be available for dairy cow rations, compared to 3.3 million tons last year.
"Despite significant hurricane impacts, the size of the South Texas crop combined with improved yield potential in other Texas cotton-growing areas will create ample supplies of cottonseed this year," says Shawn Wade of Plains Cotton Growers. The Texas High Plains, which produces about 30% of the nation's cotton crop, enjoyed favorable growing conditions in 2017.
With favorable cottonseed prices, Tom Wedegaertner, director of cottonseed research and marketing at Cotton Incorporated, urges dairy producers to consider locking in their cottonseed needs.