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Mr. COTTINGHAM. That is correct. The CHAIRMAN. All right. I am in agreement with you. That is what I think we might, in fact I believe that the evidence shows that a good deal of wheat that is now on hand is good for feed only and not millable. Mr. COTTINGHAM. I agree.
The CHAIRMAN. That is one problem that I think we can attack from that standpoint.
Mr. COTTINGHAM. The same with seven-eighth-inch cotton.
The CHAIRMAN. You have it also with tobacco, a lot of that you can't sell. We might have to touch on that subject.
Mr. COTTINGHAM. I am in favor of quality control.
We have next Mr. E. D. Funderburk who couldn't be here and Mr.
STATEMENT OF W. C. HUFFMAN, NEWBERRY, S. C. Mr. HUFFMAN. I am W. C. Huffman from Newberry, S. C. I am a turkey grower. We don't have too many gripes. The turkey people as a whole, that is.
The CHAIRMAN. I am glad to hear that.
Mr. HUFFMAN. I thought you would be, sir. As you know, we have gone along pretty well on our own without asking too many favors from the Agriculture Department. However, last year we did get into a jam and asked for a little help in being bailed out but we failed to get that.
The CHAIRMAN. You mean the purchase program!
Mr. HUFFMAN. Yes, sir; there was an overproduction. What we asked at that time was that turkeys be included in the school-lunch program.
The CHAIRMAN. It can be used. We have used a lot to my knowledge of turkeys and you want to use more.
Mr. HUFFMAN. I know that, but in a situation of that kind just a few more meals served through the school lunch or the Armed Forces adding on a few more meals during the year would have meant a great deal to the turkey industry.
The CHAIRMAN. We get the same thing from the beef and chicken grower and the pork producer.
Mr. HUFFMAN. I realize that. I would like to compliment the Department on the reports that you get out. We know pretty well at all times what is going on. We even have a report which we call an intentions report. I suppose you are familiar with that.
The CHAIRMAN. Yes. Let me ask you this: What effect do these reports have in suggesting to you either upping your production or lowering it?
Mr. HUFFMAN. On the small grower, Senator, I doubt that it has too much effect, but on the large grower, and, of course, they control a lot of the small growers, it does have some effect.
The CHAIRMAN. I tell you why I asked that. We got the information or testimony from quite a few witnesses who said that if it were possible to get more accurate predictions of the needs of wheat, cotton and how to dispose of it, that such information might be used as a basis of the producer to keep in line with consumption so as to not overproduce. Do you think that same principle could be applied to other commodities?
Mr. HUFFMAN. Theoretically, I doubt that it would work that way,
The CHAIRMAN. The reason for this is, of course, I presume that the turkey grower can change overnight, but you could not do that with cattle.
Mr. HUFFMAN. No, sir; you can't do that with cattle. It takes a full year to grow your turkeys. There is one improvement that comes to mind that I think would be of some value and it has only been brought about in recent years. There has been a broad-breasted large white turkey developed which is rapidly taking the place of the small white turkey because it can be killed at any age and either used as a broiler turkey or grown to maturity. When the reports come out and say that there are so many thousands of large turkeys being produced and so many small, we don't know whether these large turkeys are all bronze or what percentage are whites. That would be valuable information to have.
The CHAIRMAN. That is just an administrative matter and that could easily be taken care of if the turkey people get together.
Mr. HUFFMAN. Another improvement that I think could be made in the storage holdings reports, we would like to know how many toms of 20 pounds and up are being held and how many hens and how many small toms. That would be valuable.
Senator JOHNSTON. Do you know whether or not your organization has taken that up with the department?
Mr. HUFFMAN. The report?
Senator JOHNSTON. I believe it would be well for you to do that. If you do that I believe they would be glad to follow the request.
Mr. HUFFMAN. We most likely will. We have a convention in January
The CHAIRMAN. Anything further?
Mr. HUFFMAN. That is all that I have. We appreciate your cooperation with us. The CHAIRMAN. Thank you. We will do our best.
Mr. Hardy, please. Give your name in full and your occupation. STATEMENT OF CLIFFORD H. HARDY, EXECUTIVE SECRETARY,
CAROLINAS GINNERS ASSOCIATION, BENNETTSVILLE, S. C. Mr. HARDY. I am Clifford H. Hardy. I live on our family farm in Dillon County, S. C., but am also employed as executive secretary of the Carolinas Ginners Association and the National Cotton Ginners Association.
My interest in the cotton program is twofold, but at this time I feel that I should speak to you as an individual cotton producer in the southeast, as views on the proposals for changes in the cotton program vary geographically across the Cotton Belt.
Your presence here in South Carolina is proof that you realize the need for changes and additional relief for the cotton producers of the Nation. It is certainly true in South Carolina and particularly on my home farm.
Prior to World War II we normally planted up to 600 acres of cotton on our farm of slightly more than 1,200 cleared acres.
The planting was dependent upon the size of the tenants' families. Since the war we could handle this acreage more profitably with fewer families due to advanced mechanization. However, acreage controls have reduced our planting of cotton to less than 18 percent of our cleared acreage. We do have tobacco as a second money crop, but it requires approximately 400 man-hours of labor per acre and is not the moneymaking bonanza that it is credited with being.
Our tenant families are still dependent upon cotton as a source of income.
I am sure that you are familiar with similar reductions, but I wished to point out our particular farm situation in this area Cotton is and should remain an important part of the life of the southeastern farmer. Many of our farmers know no other crop even with the tremendous trend toward diversification.
All cotton farmers are realizing the tremendous inroads being made into their domestic market by the increasing imports of foreign produced textiles. We know that our American mills cannot compete with these foreign manufacturers and continue paying our present price for cotton when the foreign mills are paying their labor only onetenth the amount that our mills are required to pay.
These foreign mills are buying the bulk of their raw cotton from competing producers in other parts of the world at lower prices. We feel that our principal customers, the American textile industry, should be given protection from foreign competition by means of an import quota. I believe that you will find many cotton farmers who will favor passage of S. 2702.
The only complaint that I can see which would be voiced concerning this bill is that the limitations on imports are not stringent enough. We would like to add that the year 1955 should not be used as a base year in determining the average annual quantity allowed to be imported. Importation of Japanese textile goods during 3 months this year far exceeded the annual imports of the 2 preceding years. We must protect our domestic textile industry if we are to retain the chief consumer of our cotton production.
It is my firm belief, and I am not alone in this belief, that the Secretary of Agriculture already has sufficient power and direction from the Congress through existing laws to have disposed of the bulk of the present so-called surplus. We hear much talk of the cost of the support program and particularly where cotton is concerned. Can we honestly talk of the cost of the program while the cotton is still on hand! It is my understanding that the disposal of previous cotton surpluses under the loan program proved profitable. That tremendous stockpile of cotton is just one more pillar of security in the event of aggression on the part of the Communist countries.
Mr. Benson and many State Department officials have expressed concern that we would be accused of dumping if we were to sell our Government held cotton on the world market at world prices. We haven't been so accused in disposing of our food surpluses and thereby releasing foreign acreage for cotton production. American technicians, American capital, American machinery, have been freely given by our Government to foster the production of foreign cotton, which is taking away our share of world markets. We have made enough concessions to these foreign countries through our past controls on production.
It is time now to protect our people, the cotton farmer and the textile industry. We cannot sacrifice this important segment of our Nation in the game of world politics. The cotton farmers do not want Federal handouts, but we do feel that as long as all other productive labor has the benefit of supporting wages and the bargaining power of the labor unions, we deserve a fair return for our efforts.
We want a continuance of 90 percent parity in supporting the price of our cotton production. Cotton is not a perishable commodity; therefore, the cost of this aid cannot be determined until the surplus has been reduced. Only then can we even think of giving up supports and controls and reverting to the law of supply and demand. Too many thousands of families would become destitute and heavier burdens on the relief rolls if supports were dropped even slightly at this time.
In the future we might try a two-price system if and when the proper legislation is passed to protect our domestic mills from the competition of foreign textiles produced at one-tenth the cost of American textiles. It might not be necessary to resort to this if our present surplus could be used to win back part of our world market. Annual population increases will account for some of our additional production of the future. Now, however, is the time we are here to find help for the cotton farmer.
We recommend a national reserve over and above the announced national allotment to protect the small cotton producer. We heartily endorse S. 2196 and feel that it will go a long way in alleviating the hardships of our smaller farmers.
The CHAIRMAN. Is that over and above the national allotment?
The CHAIRMAN. Why could we not do it within the national acreage allotment?
Mr. HARDY. I believe, sir, that you are familiar with the bill I speak of.
The CHAIRMAN. I am familiar with it, but the trouble is we can't pass it. So what is the use to say you are for it? In most of the States there are but a handful of small farmers and the West is able to control enough votes to prevent us from passing this. If we could make that within the national quota-in other words, let us assume that the national quota is X number of bales. If within that national quota you could provide a sufficient amount to take care of the small farmers we might put that through. If we make it above the quota you get into hot water. The difficulty is that we cannot get the votes to put that over, and my fear is—and I have expressed it to Senator Stennis, who is one of the authors of that—that such a method would further aggravate our surpluses because it means more acreage and more production.
Mr. HARDY. In taking care of the smaller farmers one objection is the fact that the smaller farmers are centered in Southeast and Midsouth and we would get opposition from the larger growers in the Western States.
The CHAIRMAN. You would be surprised at how you get it from big growers in the Southeast because it would come from them, you see.
We tried-Senator Johnston can tell you we tried-to obtain a minimum of 4 acres for I think 167,000 farmers. We had it all arranged before the committee but when we came before the Senate even the South was divided. That is how we lost it.
Mr. HARDY. I still feel we should find some way to help them because these small farmers are not producing the surplus.
The CHAIRMAN. I am with you. I am not arguing against you. I am trying to point out the difficulties of putting through such a program as you now advocate. Senator Thurmond, you remember that, when we tried to get that through.
Senator THURMOND. Yes, sir.
The CHAIRMAN. The moment the South became divided we were beaten.
Mr. HARDY. There is one other thing which is an alternative to the present support program. You have heard mention earlier of the land rental program but my idea is a program of land rental by the Government whereby at least 20 to 25 percent of the farmlands be devoted to soil-conserving crops or practices.
However, my idea is stipulating that not more than 50 percent of the farm's total acreage be planted in crops now in surplus.
The CHAIRMAN. That is a difficult idea. You mean in addition to the taking out of
Mr. HARDY. Twenty to twenty-five percent.
The CHAIRMAN. Now, suppose a farm has, let's say, a quota of cotton, wheat, and rice. Would you permit that farmer to say, “I will grow all cotton and not the other two" for that 50 percent?
Mr. Hardy. I think that violating one phase of the control program should automatically take any rights away from that individual farmer for supports on another commodity.
The CHAIRMAN. In addition to your proposal, then, you would still want controls on all of the commodities on which you have payments?
Mr. HARDY. That is right, sir. The CHAIRMAN. And not let them choose the one they want? Mr. HARDY. I think it should be based on the historic plantings of the farm. We don't grow any rice in South Carolina any more. It drifted out toward your way.
The CHAIRMAN. I am not arguing from the standpoint of the State of Louisiana. Forget that. I am just simply pointing out to you that it is all right to say no more than 50 percent be put in crops in surplus. You might find some fellow abandoning some crops and just centering on one. You would
want to limit him under the present program of marketing quotas and acreage allotments?
Mr. HARDY. Yes, sir.
Mr. HARDY. And these other commodities which are supported at 90 percent should have marketing quotas also.
The CHAIRMAN. Let me ask you this: You go around the country here and you will find that the poultry fellows are in trouble; you find