DOERUN, GA (WALB) - It's peak cotton season in Georgia. Cotton gins are running non-stop, but it's not turning out to be a great year for one of South Georgia's top crops. Some farmers are actually losing money.
Officials at Mobley Gin Company in Doerun said their volume of cotton bails is down this year because dry summer weather kept yields down in some fields. But what's happening in China is also affecting South Georgia farmers.
Mobley Gin Company is running 24/7,ginning thousands of cotton bails for south Georgia farmers, but though the amount of cotton coming through is down.
" So far it's been good, the dry land as we anticipated has come in fairly poor that's because of the drought during the Summer, but the irrigated that we see that has started to roll in is just as good as it's been in the past couple of years," said John Mark Mobley, Vice President.
The current price for cotton is also down to a little more than 60 cents a pound. That's less than some farmers need to turn a profit. It's far less than the record of $2 a pound a little more than 3 years ago.
Part of what's driving down the price is lower demand in China... the largest consumer of cotton.
" They've got a surplus and the demand is just not there this year and it's driven the price down and it looks like it'll be down again next year," said Mobley.
Mobley Gin Company usually averages between 65 to 80 thousand bails a year, but this year they're hoping to reach 60 thousand bails.
"Our overall number of bails will be down overall over the year because of the dry land, but it's not going to affect us too much we'll have to see next year with the price if it's not competitive then there might be less acres of cotton planted next year as oppose to like peanuts or some other type of crop," said Mobley.
Mobley said strong yields on irrigated cotton fields could help farmers make it through their tough year.