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First Bale
Rules and Regulations

Think you might have a shot at the First Bale of 2024 Cotton grown in the United States?

Call or Text the Harlingen Cotton Committee

Kelly McLemore: 956.536.5285

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Section Title

Check presentation will take place during the First Bale Auction and Scholarship Fundraiser on September 19th, 2024. 

The grower or a representative must be present at the auction to receive the check. Upon certification, the bale becomes property of the Harlingen Cotton Committee. All rules will be strictly enforced.

Rules and Regulations

  • The First bale will be designated as the first 1,500 pound minimum of seed cotton delivered to a participating gin in the Rio Grande Valley.

  • The Harlingen Cotton Committee will be notified of the expected delivery time so that a representative can verity delivery. The gin will provide certification of delivery, time and weight. The First Bale seed cotton will be ginned when the gin begins its normal ginning season and the final baled and ginned cotton will be delivered to the Harlingen Committee. It shall contain no perished or immature staple and should be ginned with normal ginning practices. It can not be reginned or plated.

  • The producer must not plant prior to February 1, 2024. All other state and federal regulations are to be followed. 

  • The producer of the first bale must furnish affidavits satisfactory to the Rules Committee. These include a statement from the grower along with supporting affidavits from at least two (2) of the following:

    • The county agent

    • a recognized employee of the US or State Department of Agriculture

    • the ginner

    • other recognized industry representative with personal knowledge of the field.

      • Affidavits must declare: 

        • Producers name​

        • Farm Number and location

        • Exact Planting Date

        • That this is of new crop cotton plated on or after February 1, 2024, containing no volunteer or re-growth or pooled cotton. 

        • That this was picked from open bolls that were allowed to mature in the field in normal cultural practices. 

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