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Drought takes toll on country’s largest cotton producer

The Zady clothing line sources cotton from the Texas Organic Cotton Cooperative in Lubbock, Texas.
Zady
The Zady clothing line sources cotton from the Texas Organic Cotton Cooperative in Lubbock, Texas.

LUBBOCK, Texas (AP) — Drought and extreme heat have severely damaged much of the cotton harvest in the U.S., which produces roughly 35% of the world’s crop. Nowhere is this more apparent than the Texas High Plains, the windswept region that grows most of the crop in the nation’s top cotton-producing state. Forecasters and agricultural economists say that Texas cotton farmers could abandon nearly 70% of what they planted in the spring, making it the worst harvest in more than a decade. Losses could cost the region $1.2 billion, despite the federal insurance payments that farmers rely on during bad harvest years.