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US cotton area increases this growing season

US cotton growers may plant more cotton acres this spring. Reason: strong prices. Domestic plantings may hit 11 million acres this spring, an increase of 9.4 per cent, or 9,00,000 acres. For the past three years, US cotton producers have struggled with low cotton prices, high production costs, and the resulting financial hardships.

The Southeast could see a slight increase, up one tenth of a per cent. Alabama will see a 14 per cent increase. But the biggest cotton producing state in the region, Georgia, is projected to see a three per cent drop in plantings as farmers put more acres toward peanuts.

In the Mid-South, cotton could see a nearly 13 per cent increase overall. Mississippi leads the region with a boost of 27 per cent. Tennessee cotton is up 16 per cent. In the Southwest, growers intend to plant nearly eleven per cent more cotton acres. Texas is increasing its cotton plantings by 9.5 per cent. Kansas is up 45 per cent. Oklahoma cotton is up 30 per cent.

On the whole, the US is expected to generate 16.8 million bales of all-cotton. About 12.5 million of those bales will be headed to export markets. Reduced exports to China have been partially offset by increased exports to Vietnam, Bangladesh and Mexico.