One of the most rewarding aspects of having a growing company is getting to watch your customers succeed along with you. Americot is pleased to be able to highlight cotton growers who have benefited from our products. For this Grower Spotlight, we introduce you to Justin Hawkins from Leachville, Arkansas, in the northeastern part of the state.
Justin represents the fifth-generation members of the Hawkins family to farm their land, dating back to his great-great-grandfather who settled there in the early 1900s. Today the operation is jointly owned and managed by Justin and his brothers, Heath and Mark, along with their father, Cole. Collectively, the Hawkins Farm includes almost 5500 acres of various parcels of land, with about 3500 acres of it planted in cotton. The Hawkins family also grows peanuts, corn, watermelons and other crops.
“Our property is kind of scattered and stretched out from Black Oak to Monette to Manila,” explained Justin. “From end to end, it’s about 10 to 15 miles.” “It’s a very diverse operation, and they do a fantastic job with everything they grow,” said Chris Booker, North Delta Americot sales representative. “They get great yields every year, so it’s obvious they’re doing things right.”
To efficiently manage the widespread land and their company employees, the Hawkins family members have designated specific responsibilities to share and handle.
“My brother Mark and I take care of the row crops, and Heath is in charge of the watermelons,” Justin said, “and my dad oversees all of us.” In addition to the many other things that require his attention, Justin is the family member who’s generally given the job of making cotton seed decisions, and he’s a loyal customer to the NexGen® brand.
“We’ve been with Americot since the early 2000s. They supply good seed,” said Justin. “NexGen cotton seed gives us good yields, and they have the best fiber package we’ve found. We also like it because the seed works in our soil. It’s sandy loam and some gumbo.”
“They’ve had good results with the NG 3522 B2XF variety,” agreed Booker. “It works across all soil types, and it fits in great with their peanut-corn rotation.”
“I’ve known Chris a long time. He’s a good seed rep,” Justin added. “We get excellent service from Americot.”
“Justin and his family have bought NexGen cotton seed from Americot for a long time,” Booker said. “They’re good friends to the company… and to me.”
The Hawkins family has proven that they’ve been exceptional growers and good stewards of the land for well over a hundred years, but what does the future look like? Is there another generation awaiting their turn to run the farm? “Our kids are barely involved yet,” Justin said. “My son is only eleven, but when the time comes, he can do whatever he wants.”