"Cotton has the best marketing options we've come across," says Chris.
Extended family invest in cotton
Southern Cotton works with a number of family partnerships across the Southern Valley, and the Hardy's are no exception.
The Hardy family - Chris, brothers, Darren and Perry, and son Scott - run a mixed enterprise operation in the Murrumbidgee Irrigation Area growing predominantly cotton, rice, malting barley, canola seed and soybean. Brother Darren is on the original farm, which was bought by the Hardy's parents in 1969.
Family and farming go hand in hand for the third generation farming family who collectively farm 2,500ha within a 10km radius in the small farming community of Coleambally.
No strangers to hard work, daughter Jenna works part time on the farm and Chris's wife Sue supports the business in the office and is more than happy to jump on a tractor.
According to Chris, they converted to cotton in 2012 when the Southern Cotton gin opened because it has the best return per megalitre. "The return is around $250 a megalitre."
"We were looking for an alternate crop to rice or corn with better marketing options", Chris said of the switch. "Cotton has the best marketing options we've come across."
These marketing options include forward selling, which the Hardy's have done for both the 2016 and 2017 seasons.
"Apart from ofering assistance with forward selling options, Southern Cotton ofers their growers competitive ginning prices and a maximum seed return program to ensure their return matches their efort," Chris added.
Chris believes his family's partnership is well supported by the team at Southern Cotton. "Kate is incredibly easy to get along with and helpful. Nothing is ever a struggle."
Collectively, the Hardy's have over 500 hectares of cotton sown for the 2016 season and are on track to yield 11.5 tonnes/ha.
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