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T-Shirt Travels Review – 3: Tees and Dream Teams

This chapter is summed up by a single sentence, “The Lubbock [West Texas] area benefits from a highly symbiotic and virtuous circle relationship between farmers, private companies, universities and the US government.” (26) It’s fair to say that is a dream team to have on your side. In addition the farmer’s were an extremely tight-knit group which protected each other’s interests and expanded vertically so they would own all the levels of processing.

Even though I don’t have much more to say, this is a fantastic chapter – probably my favorite so far.

One final thought. I’ve heard a lot about corn subsidies. Mainly, how staggeringly high they are. So I was stunned by this passage: “On a per acre basis, subsidies paid to cotton farmers are 5 to 10 times as high as those for corn, soybeans, and wheat, and subsidies to cotton are also 3 to 6 times high relative to production than are subsidies to soybeans and corn.” (49) That’s a glimpse into the extent of domestic subsidies. Internationally, if subsidies were removed, world cotton prices would increase 3 to 15 percent. (51) Wow.