Ron Harkey was elected president of the Cotton Growers Warehouse Association at its annual meeting in Myrtle Beach, S.C. Harkey is president and CEO of Lubbock, Texas-based Farmers Cooperative Compress.

The 12-member CGWA is a grower-owned service organization committed to high standards in handling cotton. Support of the National Cotton Council is a prerequisite for CGWA membership.

Last year, Harkey noted, CGWA farmer-owned warehouses from the Carolinas to California received, stored and loaded for shipment nearly half of the total U.S. cotton crop.

“At a time when the global textile industry is putting unprecedented strain on warehousing and transportation, we (CGWA members) embrace the most modern and efficient technology available to assure orderly movement of cotton to mills,” Harkey said.

“The CGWA still believes more transparency is needed in warehousing and shipping cotton, and our policy is to help make that happen. This includes using electronic portals to improve communications between shippers and warehousers. We also are seeking ways to improve how bales are selected. With increasing fuel, labor and building costs, we must work smarter to eliminate wasted movement.”

Other CGWA officers elected were: Jay Cowart, Altus, Okla., and Bob Snodgrass, Taylor, Texas.