Participants in the 2003 Southwest Crops Production Conference may earn as many as five continuing education units from the Texas Department of Agriculture as they pick up the latest information available on crop production and marketing.

CEUs also will be available for Certified Crop Advisers.

Registration begins at 7:45 a.m. at the Lubbock Civic Center with sessions beginning promptly at 8:15. The meeting will adjourn at 5 p.m.

In addition to pest control, production tips and market outlooks for cotton and grains, speakers also will discuss changes in peanut regulations and sign up deadlines for farm bill programs.

“The Southwest Farm Press Crops Expo at Lubbock is a great opportunity for producers to get cutting-edge information on what's happening in agriculture in our region,” says Randy Boman, Extension cotton agronomist at Lubbock and a featured speaker.

“With the new farm bill and myriad other things happening out there, producers need all the quality information they can get. It's still a tough situation on the cotton farm, and with varieties and seed-delivered technology, irrigation issues, new insecticides, regulations, etc.,coming full speed ahead the Southwest Crops Conference and Expo is a great source of information.

“Producers will also have time to network with colleagues from across the region and gain information and experiences that may be of value to their operations.”

Along with Boman, who will discuss cotton agronomic practices, Extension integrated pest management specialist Jim Leser will examine some of the newer cotton insecticides and how they fit into 2003 pest management strategies. Peter Dotray, Extension weed specialist, will tackle the latest in weed control tactics and Calvin Trostle, Extension agronomist, will provide updates on grain sorghum production techniques.

Carl Anderson will talk about cotton market outlooks; Wayne Cleveland, National Grain Sorghum Producers, and Texas Corn Producers Board Chairman Joe Reed will discuss grain outlook.

Jim Little, administrator, Farm Service Agency, Washington, is slated to discuss farm program signup delays and consequences for missing deadlines. April 1 is the cutoff for establishing acreage base and yields.

A farmer panel will provide insights on efficient moisture management. Scott Orr, High Plains Underground Water District No.1, will moderate the panel and discuss the region's water situation.

Steven Boston, with the Texas Department of Agriculture, will update conference participants on the latest in agricultural rules and regulations. Attendees may receive one continuing education unit for laws and regs.

Sponsors for the annual event include: the Plains Cotton Growers, Inc.; the Texas Cooperative Extension Service; the Texas A&M Agricultural Research Station; the USDA-ARS station at Lubbock., Texas Tech; and Southwest Farm Press.