2019 a pleasant surprise for cotton farmers

2019 a pleasant surprise for cotton farmers

METTER, Ga. (WTOC) - Talk to people in the cotton business and they might tell you 2019 could be remembered as much for what didn’t happen as what did.

Cotton arrives by the ton at Growers' Gin for processing. Craig Lanier says they've seen more than they first expected after a dry summer. But the crop fared better than the past three that were struck by Hurricanes Matthew, Irma, and Michael.

“It was extremely important to have a good year this year, after three years where the crop was damaged by hurricanes. Yields were down, quality was down,” Lanier said.

Lanier said cotton suffered some yield lost in October and November when fields saw rain every five days or so. But growers rebounded to get the rest of the crop picked and get it to the gin. Lanier said he and other businesses rise and fall with farmers, from equipment and seed companies to gins even the banks.

“All of that is affected by the size of the crop we make. All that money turns over several times, locally. And it goes in and out of the bank several times,” Lanier said.

He said, after rocky weather during the season, he and others are thankful for every bale they see bundled and bagged.

Lanier said this better-than-expected crop could help some growers stay in business for next year.

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