The Southwest now accounts for the largest regional share of U.S. cotton production, accounting for 47 percent of U.S. cotton production in 2007, up from 25 percent in 2003.

In the same period, the production share for Southeast producers fell from 25 percent to 17 percent, and the share for Delta producers fell from 35 percent to 28 percent.

The increased production share for Southwest producers reflects low average per-acre production costs, high average per-acre returns for upland cotton production, and the lack of alternative crops compared with other U.S. regions.

Although Southwest cotton yields per planted acre were similar to the U.S. average, the region's relatively low per-acre cotton production costs were largely responsible for high average returns.

This chart appears in Characteristics and Production Costs of U.S. Cotton Farms, 2007, EIB-104.