CULLISON — Cotton harvest 2020 has started in south-central Kansas, and Next GINeration Cotton Gin at Cullison has a pleasant surprise for area farmers.

David Lingle, general manager at Next GINeration, along with Cassie Goyen, office manager, said that this year, Next GINeration is ginning for the seed. This means producers will owe nothing to the gin after processing their cotton.

"Ginning, freight, classing, insurance and dues will all be covered with zero charge," Lingle said.

Company owners made the decision to offer this trade-off because of the uncertainty that 2020 has brought in the farm sector. Next GINeration officials said they wanted to help cotton growers keep more of their own money in their own pockets.

"This means that we are guaranteeing that what we would normally pay to the producer for allowing us to keep their seed, is going to cover the ginning costs,"Goyen said. "There will be no charge to any producer from Next GINeration."

Farmers who bring in their cotton to the Cullison facility usually would pay about $17 per finished bale, so this will be an advantage for their customers.

Almost all of the cottonseed that goes through Next GINeration is used for cattle feed. Feedlots, dairy farms, and even small operations use the cottonseed for protein, fiber and energy for their cattle herds.

The main buyers of the seed produced at Next GINeration are Gavilon, Capstone Commodities and Tallgrass Commodities, large producers that ship the seed to farms across the northern U.S.

Recent upgrades at Next GINeration have doubled the gin’s capacity, allowing crops to be processed quickly.

Lingle and Goyen said they believe the 2020 cotton crop will get through the gin faster than ever, and they are ready to help farmers get the best deal for their cotton crop.