Deputy Administrator of Cotton and Tobacco Programs for the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), Darryl W. Earnest, has approved both the Cotton Board’s and Cotton Incorporated’s 2009 budgets.

The Cotton Board submitted a letter requesting approval of the budgets on Sept. 15, 2008 following their annual meeting. USDA approved an operation budget of $4,680,355 for the Cotton Board.

Cotton Incorporated’s approved budget consists of $78 million in program funding and $3.1 million in supplemental funding, bringing their total approved budget to $81.1 million. The breakdown of Cotton Incorporated’s budget is as follows:

• Fiber Research Committee $17,208,000.

• Product Research & Development $10,285,000.

• Global Strategy & Implementation $14,164,000.

• Consumer Marketing Committee $31,890,000.

• Administration $4,453,000.

• Supplemental Funding $3,100,000.

TOTAL $81,100,000.

The Cotton Research & Promotion Act established the Cotton Board as a quasi-governmental, non-profit entity to serve as the administrator of the Cotton Research & Promotion Program. Funded by America’s cotton producers and importers through the cotton check-off, the program’s research and promotion activities are conducted worldwide by Cotton Incorporated, the Cotton Board’s sole-source contracting organization, to increase the demand for and improve the market position of cotton.

The Cotton Research & Promotion Program continues to work in all areas of cotton’s pipeline — from the field to the consumer — to keep cotton the No. 1 fiber choice in the U.S.

For more information about the Cotton Board and the innovative activities stemming from the program, visit www.cottonboard.org>.