Staplcotn’s 100 millionth bale of cotton
Greenwood, Miss., March 18, 2016/ At their quarterly board meeting in March, the board of directors and officers of Staple Cotton Cooperative Association (Staplcotn) officially recognized the receipt of the 100 millionth bale of cotton received on December 18, 2015 to be marketed by the association. The bale was produced in Donalsonville, Georgia, by Mark Hanna of Hanna Farming Partnership and ginned by Miller County Gin Company.
Meredith Allen, President and CEO of Staplcotn, commented, “Since this 100 millionth bale is such a milestone and a testimony to the strength of the company, we have opted to keep this bale and put it on display.”
During its first year of business in 1921, Staplcotn members produced 156,264 bales. Five years later, the total number of bales received reached 1 million. In 1956, Staplcotn’s total hit the 10 million mark. “When you look at the fact that we didn’t start receiving 1 million bales or more per year until the 1980s, getting to the 100 million mark this quickly is pretty amazing,” Allen remarked.
Hanna was presented a plaque by board chairman, Mike Sturdivant, as a keepsake for his participation in this momentous occasion. Hanna has been a member of Staplcotn since 1995. “It’s quite a thrill to have a part in Staplcotn’s history. I joined Staplcotn as soon as they came to Georgia. I wouldn’t want to be in the cotton business without them. I just don’t have to worry at all about getting my cotton marketed,” he said.
Shane Stephens, Vice President of Cotton Services and Warehousing, remarked, “As happy as we are that we have reached this benchmark in Staplcotn’s timeline, I’d say that we are just as pleased that we received all of the bales before it as well as the ones after it. Every single bale is important and we always strive to do the very best job we can do for our membership. I think that’s what this particular bale represents as well.”
Staplcotn is the oldest and one of the largest cotton marketing cooperatives in the United States and provides a range of services to their members, including domestic and export marketing, cotton warehousing, and agricultural financing through Stapldiscount, the lending arm of Staplcotn.
Staplcotn is a 100% producer-owned company. They presently handle a total of over 14,000 farm accounts in 11 states – Mississippi, Louisiana, Arkansas, Missouri, Tennessee, Alabama, Florida, Georgia, North Carolina, South Carolina and Virginia. Total membership in the Association, consisting exclusively of growers and share rent landlords, is 8,311 members who are located in 46 states. This membership includes marketing, warehouse and Stapldiscount patrons.