VIRAL VIDEO: South Plains Cotton Production Has Significant Impact
A new study by Texas Tech University and Texas A&M AgriLife Extension found that crop production has a substantial overall impact on employment and the economy in the Texas High Plains region. The most recent data shows that crop production on the South Plains supported more than 103,000 jobs and generated more than $12.2 billion in economic activity in 2010.
Darren Hudson, a professor in the department of agricultural and applied economics and director of the Texas Tech Cotton Economics Research Institute, led the study. The total crop value production is roughly 15 percent of the overall regional economy. “It’s roughly 20 percent of employment about 20 percent of the jobs in the Panhandle and South Plains are tied directly to crop production agriculture, pretty substantial amount of employment,” he said.
The research also showed that cotton production has nearly doubled from last year. The research team estimates that 3.5 million cotton bales will be produced this year. Last year, the total number of cotton bales produced was 1.8 million. But Hudson said this number is still down from average production.
“Especially if we look at the last 10 years of production, this is about 10 percent below the average,” he said. The average amount of cotton bales produced in the last 10 years is about 4 million. However, current drought conditions have decreased the overall level of production.
“The last two years have been pretty substantial hits on the agricultural sector, which has had an impact on the Lubbock economy and the regional economy as well,” Hudson said. Researchers note that the total numbers of jobs and economic activity for 2011 will be available in January.
Written by Chelsea Davis
CONTACT: Darren Hudson, director, Cotton Economics Research Institute, Texas Tech University, (806) 742-2864 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Editor’s Note: For video, go to http://www.kcbd.com/story/20200937/cotton-production-in-the-south-plains-significantly-higher-this-year