Community Coverage: The Business of Ralls - Cotton

Ralls has been called an oasis surrounded by 250,000 acres of cotton. To put that into perspective, New York City is roughly 205,000 acres! In Ralls, cotton isn't just "big business", it's "the business".

"If they suffer, the rest of us suffer...about $31 million per year of revenue that comes into this area because of cotton," Ralls Mayor Kelly Wing said.

But that $31 million in revenue isn't just because of the farmers and their hard work. The Ralls economy as a whole revolves around cotton. Virtually every business is effected.

"We've got the sprinkler business as you come in. We've got the co-op out there that's a big business; we've got the seed company" Wing said.

And this year has been a good one.

"All in all, we've got a pretty decent start on the crop," Darcy Martin said.

Martin farms nearly 1,400 acres of cotton around Ralls, and he says cotton farming is a delicate balance of moisture and heat.

"Some years are a little tougher than others, but this moisture will sure help," Martin said.

Martin adds that will all of the recent rain, all cotton farmers need now is some heat.
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