“They’re moving much more toward a food-producing agriculture rather than a fiber-producing agriculture. They will continue to support cotton prices in Xinjiang Province, the big upper northwest desert area that they’re clearing, where they have huge water reservoirs.

“But the east coast of China will see more feed grains — corn and oilseeds — and some rice. Their hog industry is six times larger than ours, and it’s going to be 10 times larger. It’s incredible! They made the switch to pork to give their people more meat instead of chicken, and they’re growing more feed grains for all those hogs.

“Everything the Chinese government has told us to date about their cropping and food intentions, and their move to a free market for cotton and beans, they have done — and this means the cotton price in China is going to fall.

“Chinese textile mills that have been paying as much as $1.75 per pound for cotton are now paying only $1.35,” Cleveland notes. “Where they were reimbursing growers with a target price of $1.40, now it’s going to drop to $1.20-$1.15 in the Xinjiang Province.

“They’ve identified that area as where they’re going to produce their cotton. It can be grown more efficiently there than in the eastern seaboard areas. If they do what they say they’re going to do, they won’t support the price of cotton in the eastern seaboard areas, and that will drive cotton out of that area.

“So, the handwriting is pretty much on wall that China will be producing less cotton.”