A new conference for cotton and rice management, which is only a few days away, is expected to attract a large number of growers from the Southwest.

Producers who're looking for profit-building ideas and new ways to trim production costs will want to attend the fifth annual National Conservation Tillage Cotton and Rice Conference, set for Jan. 24-25 at the Grand Casino Convention Center at Tunica, Miss.

Farmers across the Southwest will have an excellent opportunity to learn more about a wide variety of approaches to conservation tillage at the conference, sponsored by the National Conservation Tillage Digest and co-sponsored by Southwest Farm Press, along with a number of academic and technical co-sponsors.

“Our objective is to provide responsible and helpful information con conservation tillage cotton and rice production to help farmers adopt these cost-saving and time-saving procedures into their operations,” says John LaRose, publisher of the Digest and MidAmerica Farmer Grower.

“The conference will feature a mix of both researchers and producers as program speakers, and will provide a complete picture of conservation tillage — the challenges, the surprises, and the rewards.”

He says the event will provide the opportunity for productive interaction between farmers and researchers on topics related to more efficient crop production for improved cost control.

“With the continuing changes in equipment technology, weed chemistry, crop genetics, and pest/nutrient management, this conference is helpful for the novice conservation tillage farmer as well as the experienced pro.”

Thirty-two farmers from five states will outline their successes in implementing a variety of conservation tillage practices on their cotton/rice/soybean/cotton farms. Additionally, there will be presentations by 39 researchers and Extension agents from seven states that have conducted large scale trials addressing a variety of conservation tillage problems.

This year's conference will offer presentations on 73 program topics, LaRose says, and farmers who attend will have as many as 18 different presentations to choose from each hour.

Additionally, two keynote general session speakers will offer their views on the current agricultural situation. They are Dennis R. DeLaughter, professional farm manager, investment advisor, and commodity broker, and Darrel Ray, director of the Agricultural Policy Analysis Center at the University of Tennessee-Knoxville. There will also be a number of presentations on precision agriculture, corn/soybean production, soil compaction, and irrigation systems designed for use with conservation tillage.

Dr. Tommy Valco, USDA Agricultural Research Service cotton technology transfer and education coordinator, Stoneville, Miss., will be moderator for the program.

“This wide array of presentations is sure to offer topics of interest to farmers from every area of the Mid-South, LaRose says.

Call Robin Moll at 573-547-7212.