Texas cotton producer Jimmy Dodson told a Farm Foundation forum audience this week that risk management tools, particularly crop insurance, "are extremely important to cotton producers."

Dodson, chairman of the National Cotton Council's American Cotton Producers, was a participant in a panel discussion on "The Future Role of the Federal Government in Agricultural Risk Management" held at the National Press Club in Washington D.C.

Dodson said that in many parts of the Cotton Belt, "purchasing adequate crop insurance is often a requirement for securing financing for production costs. In today's environment, we do not see that requirement changing. As such, it is our hope that crop insurance products can be enhanced to further protect producers from events beyond their control."

He said that in 2010, about 95 percent of upland cotton acres were covered under some type of crop insurance and more than 85 percent of insured acres were covered under "buy-up" insurance.

Revenue products also have gained in popularity and are now covering more acres than traditional yield policies. The most common insurance choices among cotton producers are revenue products with coverage levels between 60 and 70 percent.