The USDA released a mixed outlook for global cotton production for the 2012/13 growing season. USDA projected that cotton production would decrease 5 percent while consumption rebounds. However, consumption is projected to remain below production.

Cotton production is expected to decline to 116.7 million bales as the crop competes with lower prices, higher production costs and increasing competition with grain crops that have higher prices.

Brazil is projected to have the largest decrease in planted acres this year with a 12 percent decrease projected. Brazil’s 2012/13 harvested area is forecast at 1.2 million hectares, which is down 14 percent from a year ago.  

China also is projected to have a large decrease in planted acres with the crop forecast at 30.5 million bales, down 9 percent from last year. India and Pakistan’s production is projected to decrease 6 percent each. Australia’s crop forecast is projected to decrease by 4 percent compared to last year.

Bucking global trends, the United States is projecting a 9 percent increase to 17 million bales in 2012/13. One reason that may be happening is that states outside of the traditional Cotton Belt are looking to plant cotton this year.

Cotton planting is increasing in Missouri, according to reports from the Associated Press. The Southeast Missourian reports that farmers in the five Missouri Bootheel counties where cotton is grown will plant about 400,000 acres this year, up from 375,000 acres in 2011. The only other state that is increasing cotton acres is South Carolina, according to the USDA.