Cotton Tour Connects Growers

Taylor Hillman Cotton, Education

Cotton Tour 16
Cotton growers from around the nation come to California to see our cotton industry firsthand. The cotton tour started with information about California’s challenges.

Cotton Tour Connects Growers

The 2016 Producers Information Exchange western tour, sponsored by The Cotton Foundation and Bayer CropScience, had several stops in the Central Valley on its schedule. Public relations representative with Bayer CropScience, Lee Hall, is one of the organizers of the tour. “We are giving growers from different parts of the country a chance to talk with and experience firsthand the best practices that growers in other regions have,” Hall said. “There’s a lot of diversity and differences, but there’s a lot of similarities in what growers do. It’s all about the land, their familiarity, their relationship with the land and that’s common regardless of where you go in the country.”

Hall says California’s challenges make our cotton industry different from others around the nation and the tour helps other growers learn what producers deal with out here. “Certainly the increase in regulations is a big component. The pressure not only from regulatory agencies, but also from people outside of agriculture who really don’t understand that their food is coming from their backyard,” Hall says. “It’s good for growers from different regions to hear and see this because it gives them a chance to advocate on their behalf, not only locally, but nationally for the causes of agriculture.”

On top of that, Hall says what happens here in California may help growers in other parts of the nation predict their futures. “It can be a good barometer to what’s going to happen potentially, opportunities for other parts of the country to maybe get ahead of the game,” Hall says. “Just creating that awareness is the first step in being able to then have a chance to look at issues going on.”