9027 Developing Guidelines for Organic Cotton and Peanut Production in Southwest Georgia

Thursday, January 8, 2009: 9:00 AM
Salon L (Marriott Rivercenter Hotel)
Russell C. Nuti1, Marshall C. Lamb1, Ronald B. Sorensen1 and Glynn Tillman2, (1)USDA-ARS, National Peanut Research Laboratory, Dawson, GA, (2)USDA, ARS, Tifton, GA
The demand for organically produced cotton and peanuts represents the fastest growing sector for each of these commodities.  Significant price premiums at the producer level are associated with certified organic commodities.  However, such incentives to convert a field or farm from conventional production to an organic production system are not easily or quickly observed due to the transition period required for products to be marketed as "Organic".  Five years (2004 – 2008) of research on an irrigated and non-irrigated cotton/peanut organic rotation system at the USDA/ARS National Peanut Research Laboratory's Multi-crop Irrigation Research Farm are completed.  In 2006, organic certification was approved and cotton and peanut plots were continued in conjunction with on-going irrigated and non-irrigated research in conventionally produced cotton/peanut rotations.  This work provides direct comparisons in terms of production costs, yield, grade, and quality between conventional and organic cotton and peanuts.