Crop yields are down across much of the country, and farmers have to pay higher prices for their crops.
Yet cotton farmers are still feeling the pinch.
Now, a growing body of evidence suggests they could be suffering from anemia, a chronic condition that causes low blood sugar and can cause other problems.
The evidence is mounting that farmers have been overstating the risks of the disease, and that the government is not doing enough to combat it.
But experts say the problem goes beyond the cotton harvest.
There’s no clear consensus on what’s causing the problem, and there are many theories.
Some worry that farmers may be overestimating the risk of cotton-related illnesses and even misreporting their health status to the federal government.
That’s a problem, too, because the USDA’s Food and Drug Administration doesn’t track the number of cotton plants that are under investigation.
And some experts say that many cotton growers aren’t taking the time to properly document their health conditions, which could contribute to the problem.
“There’s no one-size-fits-all answer,” said Mark Miller, a researcher at the Agricultural Marketing Institute, a trade group that advocates for cotton growers.
“The problem with cotton is that it’s a very good crop.
It’s good for the economy.
But it’s not as good for health as other crops.”
The cotton industry is grappling with a similar problem.
The cotton trade is worth about $4.5 billion a year.
And it’s booming, as is the cotton industry itself.
The trade is inextricably linked to how farmers in some areas are able to reap more of the crop that can be a big economic driver.
In the Midwest, farmers are able do more with less.
“If we get to the point where there’s an economic boom and the cotton is cheap, then it’s really hard to keep people from growing cotton,” said Steve Davis, an agronomist at the University of Illinois.
“That’s the most difficult part.”
Cotton prices, too Price for cotton has been soaring since 2014, when a new strain of the virus hit the United States, and some farmers had to pay more to grow their crops, especially in areas with low incomes.
It was also at the height of the economic boom in the early 2000s, when the country was reeling from the financial crisis.
It started with a wave of imports of cotton that drove up prices.
And then, in the last few years, prices have plummeted, which led to a wave a resurgence in demand.
It wasn’t until last year, however, that the price of cotton began to decline again.
The fall in the price has hit farmers hard.
In 2015, the average price of a bushel of cotton was $2.25, up from $2 a decade earlier, according to the United Nations’ Food and Agriculture Organization.
By 2018, the price had fallen to $1.30, from $3.50, according the USDA.
In 2017, the cotton crop lost more than 50 percent of its value.
That trend has continued, even as prices for other crops have climbed.
Farmers who have been trying to maintain yields have had to adjust, which has left them more exposed to the virus.
But there are a few reasons why the cotton boom is over.
Farmers in the South and Midwest are struggling to make ends meet.
In Texas, a cotton-growing region in the heart of the corn belt, the state’s unemployment rate is 10.8 percent, according in the United Food and Commercial Workers Union.
The median household income in the state is $51,000.
The drought, combined with rising food prices, has pushed farmers to the brink of bankruptcy.
“It’s a tough situation for us,” said J.B. Loeffler, the president of Loepplin Farms, one of the biggest cotton growers in the Midwest.
“I’m in a very hard spot right now.”
The U.S. Agriculture Department estimates that if prices don’t improve soon, the crop could lose half its value in less than three years.
In some cases, growers are making money from selling their crops at a discount to consumers, but many of those sales are just not going into the cotton belt.
And many farmers are also losing money on the sale of the cotton to other countries.
It can be difficult to track where all the cotton sold goes.
So far this year, the USDA has recorded 1.5 million cotton-seed sales, or just over 7 percent of all the sales that year.
Farmers are also reporting higher crop losses.
In 2016, the U.N. estimated that farmers lost $2 billion worth of cotton during the harvest season, or roughly 10 percent of the $9.2 billion cotton harvest in the same year.
But the government doesn’t report the exact losses.
Instead, it relies on a system called the “agricultural credit.”
The government pays farmers to sell their cotton to buyers