“Our KBH builders with extended rails are capable of building 18-19 bale modules every time,” he says. “We average 16 bales.

“If we had more time, we could keep packing, but the gin doesn’t charge me to come get the modules, so our main goal is to keep the picker going so it doesn’t have to wait on a buggy. We can do that up to about 1,200-pound cotton. If I get much over 1,200 pound cotton, we have to go to 13-bale or 14-bale modules — but, that’s a good problem to have.”

Coley Bailey, Sr., says young farmers like his son face more challenges than previous generations.

“My father managed people, I managed machines, and my son manages technology. But, managing technology doesn’t relieve him from the obligation of managing machines and people too.”

Coley, Jr.’s ability to network is perhaps the best tool he has for facing today’s challenges, his father says.

“He’s a great networker. There is a network of young farmers around who are more willing to share information and ideas than in my generation. He and his wife, Jody, who is a strong part of his partnership, are very attuned to that — more so than I ever was.”

No matter what the yield, time of season or field activity, everyone on the Bailey farming operation is aware of the one rule that guides all activity on the farm — making those pickers turn around.

It’s a philosophy that has served them well.

Coley, Jr., has served as chairman of Farm Bureau’s Cotton Committee for four years, and is president of Yalobusha County Farm Bureau. He and Jody have two children, a son, Cole, and a daughter, Mackenzie. Jody, who grew up on a cattle farm, works on the Mississippi Farm Bureau Women’s Committee.

erobinson@farmpress.com