Farm Credit 100 Fresh Perspectives
Farm Credit 100 Fresh Perspectives

Steve Verett
Executive Vice President, Plains Cotton Growers

Category
Location
Lubbock, Texas
Farm Credit Affiliation
Capital Farm Credit
Steve's Perspective

A lifelong advocate for agriculture in general and cotton in particular, Steve Verett is widely respected as a dedicated and effective farm leader who is helping make a difference for cotton producers. Steve is the executive vice president of Plains Cotton Growers, Inc., which represents the interests of farmers in 41 counties, accounting for 20 to 30 percent of the U.S. cotton crop.

He also helped establish and serves as treasurer of the Southwest Council of Agribusiness, and is a past chairman of the Lubbock Chamber of Commerce in Lubbock, Texas, where agribusiness is the keystone of the South Plains economy. In addition, he is a partner with his son and brother on a 3,500-acre family farm growing cotton, wheat and sorghum.

“I recognize the importance of the cotton industry, not only to the families whose livelihood depends on its success, but more importantly the importance of the cotton industry’s support of our region and state’s economy,” Steve says. “I hope to continue to build coalitions between growers of all crops, the agribusinesses that depend on the production sector, and the general public, so we can continue to have a vibrant and profitable cotton industry for generations to come.”

Steve is currently helping to lead the effort to have cottonseed classified as an oilseed, which would give cotton farmers access to federal risk management options during this tough economic period. Five years ago, he was instrumental in Plains Cotton Growers leading an effort to develop and implement the cottonseed insurance endorsement under the federal crop insurance program, of which he is a tireless advocate.

In the past, Steve has participated in Farm Bill discussions in the U.S. Congress as well as in World Trade Organization battles over cotton subsidies, always looking to ensure that cotton producers are fairly represented. He has testified before members of the House Committee on Agriculture multiple times, most recently in May 2015 when he discussed the financial health of the farm sector in light of declining farm income.

Steve’s vast agribusiness background and ability to educate legislators, business people and others about the intricacies and importance of cotton has been extremely significant to the West Texas economy and the U.S. cotton industry.

“With a growing world population, U.S. agriculture is in a position to continue to meet the needs and remain profitable, but we face many challenges,” Steve says. “Society as a whole has benefited from the bounty provided by U.S. agriculture, and I am confident that if we continue to build coalitions throughout all of agriculture and the public we serve, we can continue to prosper.”

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