Saturday, May 9, 2009

Cotton Council plans tie-up with retailers

Cotton Council International (CCI), a global non-profit organisation working towards the promotion of cotton fabric, is looking at tying up with India’s organised apparel retailers.

CCI is planning to allow such retailers, who showcase 80 per cent cotton apparels in their stores, to use its mark of quality.

“In 2003, we launched a similar scheme. However, we later found that some small retailers had started misusing our mark. Now, India’s retail sector is quite matured and the number of organised retailers is also on the rise,” CCI representative for India, Pakistan and Sri Lanka Sachit Bhatia told Business Standard.

CCI has launched its ‘Cool with Cotton’ campaign to help generate awareness about the benefits and versatility of cotton as a fabric, especially for India.

The organisation undertakes activities to promote cotton as the best suited fabric, including fashion shows, road shows and TV reality shows. “We also aim to position cotton as a fashionable fabric for today’s youth and have roped in several Bollywood stars to endorse cotton,” he added.

India is the second largest cotton producer in the world after China and produced about 5.3 million tonnes of cotton in 2008.

“About 5 million farmers are associated with cotton farming in India and almost 85 million people are related with its trade,” Bhatia said, adding the genetically modified cotton variety was the need of the hour to cater to rising demand.

“If India forgoes the genetically modified variety, the cotton production would be reduced to 10 per cent. The cotton yield has risen to Rs 567 kg/hectare due to the genetically modified variety,” he added

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