For the last three years, U.S. cotton producers have been heavily dependent on ad hoc emergency disaster and market loss assistance to cash flow their operations. They have not been alone. Wheat, feed grains, oilseeds and rice producers have also been faced with low commodity prices, adverse weather and the need for substantial government assistance. Price support and direct payments by CCC for fiscal years 1998-2000 averaged $17.5 billion per year (USDA Ag Outlook). Has U.S. program crop agriculture turned the corner or will additional government payments likely be needed to sustain a vulnerable sector? This paper will focus on the outlook for the Agricultural and Food Policy Center’s (AFPC’s) representative cotton farms over the period 2001-2005. The results reported herein are drawn from AFPC Working Paper 00-4 which goes into greater depth on all 82 representative farms and ranches modeled by AFPC.


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