The Cotton Board recently held its March Board Meeting in Austin, Tx., with the purpose of reviewing Cotton Incorporated's plan of operation for 2013 and to develop strategic recommendations.
The Cotton Board is the oversight and administrative arm of the Cotton Research and Promotion Program. Cotton Incorporated, a worldwide operation headquartered in Cary, N.C., is the research and promotion organization for the U.S. cotton industry. Cotton Incorporated was established by Congress through the Cotton Research and Promotion Act of 1966.
Texas Commissioner of Agriculture Todd Staples was one of several keynote speakers during the Meeting. Addressing cotton production Commissioner Staples said, "The key to our many successes has been our innovation in areas such as yield increase due to new seed varieties, water and drought management techniques and the boll weevil eradication program."
Wally Darneille, president and CEO of Lubbock-based Plains Cotton Cooperative Association (PCCA) focused on helping both producers and importers make sense of cotton's extensive supply chain, which ranges from producer to spinning mills and cotton marketings. Over the last couple of years cotton prices have varied greatly, often swinging up and then back to a lower level.
"I don't think the absolute level of prices is as important - if everyone can make some money - as stability in prices," Darneille said. "Volatility has killed us over the last couple of years."
The Cotton Board has a new consumer advisor. Marshal Cohen is the chief industry analyst for the NPD Group, a market research organization. He discussed ways the cotton industry can better engage the consumer.
During the meeting Cotton Incorporated's senior staff also gave an update on the Vision 21 project. Vision 21, referencing the 21st Century, is a project that is a cotton product life cycle inventory and life cycle assessment. It also measures where the consumer and the industry currently is and where both could be headed. A joint project of the National Cotton Council, Cotton Incorporated and the Cotton Council International, Vision 21 focuses on three main areas, logistical issues related to cotton from the bale to the mill, environmental issues from field to fiber, and an assessment of Asian consumer apparel and textile markets.
Learn more about Vision 21 at http://www.cottoninc.com/corporate/Pressroom/PressReleases/2011/item7994.cfm