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Thread: Cotton Crop Impact on Fabric

  1. #1
    Senior Member gypsyquilter's Avatar
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    with all the talk about cotton prices going up, my local quilt shop sent out this link

    thought this was interesting, enjoy!

    http://whipstitchfabrics.com/blog/wh...ina-this-year/

  2. #2
    Junior Member chiaraquilts's Avatar
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    Very interesting, and a good point of view about what is happening, none of us are happy about increasing costs, but this helps me understand it more. Thanks for the info.

  3. #3
    Moderator littlehud's Avatar
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    Thanks for the info.

  4. #4
    Super Member sewwhat85's Avatar
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    thanks

  5. #5
    e4
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    The world cotton crop was horrible this year and the price of cotton is increasing. That I understand. However, I don't like the attitude of manufacturers and retailers that its just the price of the cotton. The realities are that increase in the price for cotton in a typical yard of LQS quality fabric is about 14 cents. Because the markup taken by each of the steps in the process generally is at a fixed percentage that takes the price up 50 cents or more per yard. If the yarn producer adds a a 50% markup to his costs that adds another 7 cents based on the cost of the cotton - now that same cotton in yarn costs 21 cents more. If the fabric manufacturer then adds a 50% markup then the same cotton in fabric costs about 32 cents more and if the retailer adds a 100% markup that means the same 14 cents worth of cotton now costs 64 cents - 50 cents more than was paid to the farmer. The actual cost of the fabric (without fixed markup) is actually cost 14 more cents. But the blame for that 64 cent (my example, not a real cost) increase per yard of fabric is placed on the cotton (that really did cost 14 cents more per yard of fabric). Well, it sort of is since the markups are not based on actual costs, but percentages, but at each step along the way people are still making higher profits (assuming they sell the same amount of fabric - which could drop of course).

  6. #6
    Super Member trisha's Avatar
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    Has anybody ever tried to grow Cotton in Ohio? Just sayin'.

  7. #7
    Super Member gale's Avatar
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    I don't know if cotton is like other commodities but I can tell you that if the price of products containing corn/wheat/soybeans goes up at the store, that doesn't mean the farmer is getting more for them. We are living proof.

  8. #8
    Super Member Toto's Mom's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by gale
    I don't know if cotton is like other commodities but I can tell you that if the price of products containing corn/wheat/soybeans goes up at the store, that doesn't mean the farmer is getting more for them. We are living proof.
    Very true! The land around here was once prime cotton producing fields, and my grandparents farmed and picked cotton. I haven't seen a cotton field in probably 20 years.
    For some crops, there were government subsidies paid NOT to grow them. Used to produce tons pf peanuts here, too. Last year, there was one local farmer produced a peanut crop, and some of the fields are just empty.

  9. #9
    Kas
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    Yep. I remember well the smell of the defoliant on the cotton. You don't smell that much in Alabama anymore.

  10. #10
    Super Member Gramof6's Avatar
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    :D Any of you ever have to hoe or chop cotton in a field? My ex-inlaws raised cotton on their farm and let me tell you, it is HARD work! I will pay the higher prices as often as I can and I won't complain 1 bit. Rather do that, than to have to work in the field in the heat of Summer. *shudder*

  11. #11
    Super Member Toto's Mom's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gramof6
    :D Any of you ever have to hoe or chop cotton in a field? My ex-inlaws raised cotton on their farm and let me tell you, it is HARD work! I will pay the higher prices as often as I can and I won't complain 1 bit. Rather do that, than to have to work in the field in the heat of Summer. *shudder*
    My Mom grew up picking cotton, starting at about age 6, back in the 1920's, here in TX. I escaped, but know from farming in the TX heat that cotton was back breaking work.
    Yeah, we don't have any of the defoliant smells around here any more, either, that left the plants ready for the automated pickers.
    Arizona used to raise some very good cotton, too. ( Pima cottons). Don't see them any more, either. :-(

  12. #12
    Super Member gale's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Toto's Mom
    For some crops, there were government subsidies paid NOT to grow them. .
    That's one of the most misunderstood gov't programs ever. Farmers had no choice but to set aside ground but they had to maintain and grow a non productive plant on it, like some kind of grass. They had to keep it mowed and everything at their own expense. But they didn't make nearly as much on it from the gov't (especially after buying grass seed and spending $$ on fuel for mowing) as they would have with a proper crop so most farmers didn't like the set-aside program.

  13. #13
    Super Member Toto's Mom's Avatar
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    That's one of the most misunderstood gov't programs ever. Farmers had no choice but to set aside ground but they had to maintain and grow a non productive plant on it, like some kind of grass. They had to keep it mowed and everything at their own expense. But they didn't make nearly as much on it from the gov't (especially after buying grass seed and spending $$ on fuel for mowing) as they would have with a proper crop so most farmers didn't like the set-aside program.[/quote]

    Yes, I had a dear friend here who had farmed all his life, and was a 4th generation farmer and cattle rancher. I used to help him plow , and he was not real thrilled with some of the programs, either. He felt that God didn't make the land fertile to use it for useless programs, and that too many people and animals on this earth needed food, and that food wouldn't grow just everywhere.

  14. #14
    Super Member gale's Avatar
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    oh also I should add-they were not allowed to sell whatever they grew on the set-aside ground and were not allowed to graze any animals on it either. It had to be completely unused (but still maintained).

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