Thursday, January 8, 2009: 10:15 AM
Salon C (Marriott Riverwalk Hotel)
Georgia is second in the US in cotton acres planted. Georgia farmers planted 900,000 acres of cotton in 2008. Over 92% is planted to single-gene Bollgard® varieties and 85% to a single variety—DPL555BR. Single-gene technology will expire in September 2009. Producers will have to switch to two-gene (B2 or W (Widestrike) varieties. Earlier estimates are that loss of single-gene technology could result in $68 million in lost farmer and gin income. Actual loss depends on seed availability and choice, lint and cottonseed yield of other varieties, fiber quality, and differences in production cost including seed and technology fees, herbicides, and insecticides. University of Georgia official variety trials (OVT’s) are used to compare yield and fiber quality of B2 and W varieties to DPL555BR. UGA Extension recommendations are used to estimate insect and weed control costs for each technology. Net returns are calculated and compared.