Delta and Pine Land Company (D&PL) and Sparks Companies, Inc., of Memphis have created a unique program designed to serve the current and on-going crop-marketing and risk-management needs of American cotton producers.

The Loyalty Reward Program will offer cotton producers who plant the majority of their 2004 acreage in D&PL varieties an opportunity to be involved in Sparks Producer Services, which formulates marketing and risk-management strategies for producers, says Jim Willeke, vice president of sales and marketing for D&PL.

“We are very pleased to be able to offer cotton producers this valuable service from Sparks Companies, Inc., a world leader in broad-based agricultural and commodity market research, analysis and consulting,” Willeke says.

The Loyalty Reward Program will target producers who plant the majority or all of their acreage to D&PL cotton varieties. They will also have the opportunity to become a client of Sparks Producer Services at a significantly discounted cost.

Sparks Producer Services provides crop marketing and price risk management advisory services to grower/clients, utilizing fundamental market research and analysis conducted by Sparks' commodity analysts.

“The same research and analytical resources used to serve some of the largest agribusiness firms and government institutions in the world are put to work for clients of Sparks Producer Services,” says Bruce Scherr, president and CEO of Sparks Companies, Inc. “We provide information and highly personal risk management consulting tailored to each grower's specific farming operation.”

Sparks Producer Services clients have unlimited access to the extensive staff of Sparks crop marketing consultants and experienced professionals specializing in production agriculture, commodity markets and price-risk management. The service includes advice in utilizing cash markets, basis, futures, options, LDP and the government loan in developing marketing programs. The services will be offered by Sparks under contracts directly between Sparks and the producer.

“We are very pleased to be working with Sparks Companies, Inc. to offer cotton producers affordable access to world-class marketing and risk management services,” says Willeke. “This is another way D&PL differentiates itself from the competition.”

In 2004, the Loyalty Reward Program will be offered to producers in all U.S. cotton states except Arizona and California. Billing will be organized through the local seed distribution system. Producers interested in the Loyalty Reward Program should contact their D&PL regional or district sales manager or D&PL Customer Service at 800-511-7333, or call Sparks Companies in Memphis at 800-238-6083.

The Loyalty Reward Program is another component of the total value package D&PL offers its producers. This value package includes revolutionary products developed from superior cotton genetics and seed technology, expert agronomic and technical services, industry-leading seed packaging options and nearly 100 years of cotton experience.