For the last few years, cotton farmers in the upper Southeast have flocked to Farm Press' Southeast Cotton Conference.

The conference occurs at a good time of the year for meetings. The harvest has been completed and planning for the next season is well under way. It's a time to reflect on what happened last year and what's coming up this season.

Always packed full with informative presentations and discussions, the Conference is slated for Jan. 22, 2002 at the Gov. W. Kerr Scott Building at the North Carolina Fairgrounds in Raleigh. The conference begins at 9 a.m.

Pesticide credits have been applied for with the North Carolina Department of Agriculture.

The conference will feature a discussion of fiber quality from various segments of the industry.

Cottonseed companies will be on hand to discuss efforts to improve fiber quality with new varieties. Representatives from Delta and Pine Land, Stoneville Pedigreed Seed and FiberMax will discuss their individual efforts at increasing fiber quality as well as its importance.

In addition, a university cotton breeder will discuss his program. A university cotton specialist will tell growers what they can do in the field to increase fiber quality.

Following their presentations, the experts will be available for questions in a panel discussion.

What's the outlook for cotton in 2002?

We'll get the scoop from the National Cotton Council.

What's in the future for the U.S. textile industry?

A representative from the industry will address the loss of U.S. cotton mills and how the industry is coping.

The production aspect of the conference — among other things — will deal with the pressing issue of secondary insects becoming primary concerns.