U.S. upland cotton plantings to plunge 23 pct in 2013 -USDA

WASHINGTON Mon Feb 11, 2013 12:29pm EST

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WASHINGTON Feb 11 (Reuters) - U.S. plantings of upland cotton will plummet 23 percent this year, pressured by more attractive returns for corn and soybeans, the Agriculture Department projected on Monday.

USDA's projections were based on conditions at the end of 2012. It will update its figures at its annual Outlook Forum at the end of February.

The National Cotton Council's survey of growers, released on Saturday, indicated upland plantings of 8.812 million acres, down 27 percent from 2012, and Pima plantings of 203,000 acres, down 15 percent, for a potential total crop of 12.86 million acres.

Following are USDA's projections for production and use in the 2013/14 marketing year with comparisons to 2011/12 and 2012/13. Data for 2011/12 is USDA Feb. 8 estimate; figures for 2012/13 and 2013/14 are USDA projections, based on conditions in late 2012.

U.S. upland cotton production and use

(Mln bales) 2011/12 2012/13 2013/14

Plant (mln ac) 14.428 12.1 9.3

Harvest (mln ac) 9.156 10.2 7.9

Yield (lb/ac) 772 790 800

Begin stocks 2.572 3.081 5.624

Crop 14.722 16.790 13.200

Imports 5 5 5

Total supply 18.140 19.876 18.829

Domestic use 3.775 3.375 3.425

Exports 10.625 10.875 10.750

Total use 14.400 14.250 14.175

End stocks 3.730 5.624 4.644

Avg farm price (cts/lb) 88.3 68.0 68.0

U.S. cotton crop was 15.573 million bales in 2011/12 including 851,200 bales of Pima and 17.010 million bales in 2012/13 including 759,900 bales of Pima.

USDA's projections are on the Internet at

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