Industry experts will present their outlooks for all major Mid-South crops at the 58th annual Mid-South Farm and Gin Show at Memphis Feb. 26-27.

And Sen. Blanche Lincoln, D-Ark., chairman of the Senate Agriculture Committee, will be a featured speaker, offering her views on agriculture and other key issues of concern to producers.

The event, which is held at the downtown Cook Convention Center and is the largest indoor farm show in the South, is sponsored by the Southern Cotton Ginners Association, with Delta Farm Press as co-sponsor.

Tim Price, SCGA executive vice president and show manager, says the Ag Update sessions Friday and Saturday mornings give producers a chance to get the latest outlook information on Mid-South crops as they’re formulating plans for the new season.

“Following the volatility associated with the last couple of crop years, these experts will help producers determine their direction for the future,” he says.

Sen. Lincoln will be at the show Saturday, Feb. 27. “We’re honored to welcome her to our show,” Price says. “This will be a key opportunity for producers to interact with the senator and hear her thoughts on the state of American agriculture and what the future may hold.”

Carl Brothers, Riceland Foods, and Joe Nicosia, Allenberg Cotton, will headline the Ag Update seminar Friday, Feb. 26.

Richard Brock, Brock & Associates, will provide his annual grain marketing outlook and recommendations at the Ag Update seminar Saturday. All sessions begin at 8:30 a.m. “We offer a key forum about issues and problems confronting today’s producer — a place to get ideas and information on ways to increase productivity and improve management and marketing skills,” Price says.

After the broad-scale expansion of grains in recent years and sharp declines in cotton acreage, he says, “Industry leaders are expecting some leveling-off, or even a slight rebound, in cotton production in 2010.

“The cotton infrastructure remains strong, and the industry has continued developing and making available a broad range of new products — many associated with the changes in production related to the new cotton pickers with on-board module systems. And these new products are not just from mainline manufacturers, but from other companies offering equipment and products to improve efficiency and profitability.

“We’re encouraged at this surge of innovation, pointing to the resiliency of a cotton industry that’s always looking forward.”

For nearly six decades, the show has become a must-attend agricultural event for producers in the Mid-South southern states. More than 400 exhibitors will offer a broad range of products and services at this year’s event, Price says.

“2010 is shaping up to be a particularly challenging year for farmers and ginners, coming after a season that brought major weather problems and other concerns, and farmers are seeking solutions for these situations — ways they can adapt and survive.

“Our show brings together under one roof hundreds of providers of products and services, giving farmers the opportunity to see what’s new in agriculture and talk one-on-one with experts from all the companies that are exhibiting. Ours isn’t just a kick-the-tires trade show.

“It has become a place for farmers to get answers, not just from the hundreds of experts that are on hand, but in discussions with fellow farmers and ginners.”

More than 20,000 domestic and international decision-makers are expected to attend this year’s show. Admission is free, but registration is required for admittance to the show areas.

Exhibit hours are 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Friday and 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Saturday.

Member associations of the Southern Cotton Ginners Association will be holding their annual meeting during the week of the show, with informational sessions and other events, including the annual banquet honoring the Ginner of the Year.

For more information about the show, contact the Southern Cotton Ginners Association at (901) 947-3104 or visit its Web site, Mid-South Farm & Gin Show.