11th annual Georgia Cotton Commission in Tifton Wednesday

The 11th annual Georgia Cotton Commission was held at the UGA Conference Center in Tifton Wednesday.

Photo: Kailey McCarthy

Cotton growers and anyone interested in the cotton industry were invited to come out to Tifton Wednesday to learn more about the business.

The 11th annual Georgia Cotton Commission brought together cotton farmers from all over the south.

From 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Wednesday, growers attended education and research seminars leading up to a lunch featuring cotton industry experts and guest speakers.

According to Executive Director of the Georgia Cotton Commission Richey Seaton, Georgia is number two in cotton production behind Texas.

Seaton says he hopes all of the farmers left with more knowledge about the cotton industry.

"If you will, this is a day you can drink from a fire hose and learn a lot and it's something that's free to our growers. We're fortunate we have a lot of good industry sponsors that allow us to put on a nice event for our farmers," said Seaton.

According to Seaton, the cotton industry market has rebounded and is already looking better for 2018.

If you are interested in attending the 2019 Cotton Commission, the seminar is always the last Wednesday of January.

FOX 31 sat down with one local farmer who was in attendance at Wednesday's Cotton Commission.

"There's times I love it, there's times I hate it. You know I am passionate about it and I love the cotton industry," said fourth generation farmer Jimmy Webb.

Webb has been growing cotton with his family since 1980.

Today, he farms with his brother on a 3,000 acre plot of land at Harvey Jordan Farms in Leary, GA.

"I live in the house on the farm that my grand dad built in 1963 which happened to be the year I was born. Now I live there and riding some of the same fields he did, planting some of the same crops he did, it's really neat," said Webb.

Webb says being a farmer isn't always easy and often involves a lot of over time.

"You've got to love it because your hours are crazy sometimes and sometimes there's really not a whole lot that has to be done. But believe me there's always something to do at the farm, always," said Webb.

Webb says 2017 was a hard year of farming for Southwest Georgia.

Due to the January storms and Hurricane Irma, his farm lost 15 to 20% of their yield in cotton.

"It wasn't that way all over the state, I mean I've talked to growers here today that some of them had great crops but in my area it was just a tough year. It's mother nature, mother nature," said Webb.

Webb is thankful cotton prices are up already this year and looks forward to continuing the job he loves so much.

"I like to wear cotton, I hope all consumers like to wear cotton. Cotton's comfortable, it feels good and it's a sustainable product," said Webb.

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