The Philippines cotton industry is facing huge competition on home turf as the United States cotton sector officials were scouting the country for local manufacturers to carry their products. As Cotton Council International ASEAN representative, Kraipob Pangsapa points out, demand for cotton grew in the Philippines, but the use of US cotton had shrunk. Pangsapa says they have to increase sales by five per cent this year and growth will fast forward if more deals are sealed with Phinilippine manufacturers.
According to the Cotton Council International, of the average 40,000 metric tons of lint consumed by the country per year, valued at $66.57 million, at least 97 per cent of cotton is being imported, mainly from the US. The local industry, inspite of favourable soil and climate, is facing a major setback due to numerous socio-economic and technical factors, such as the cotton bollworm issue.
Pangsapa says to address and aid rising demand of cotton in the country, Cotton US plans to partner with two big local brands to introduce their products to buyers. The Cotton Council International has 19 licensees divided into six categories: women’s wear, men’s wear, men’s innerwear, children’s wear, home textiles, and personal care.
Cotton USA brand was introduced to garment manufacturers and consumers in 1994 and on June 26, the CCI’s, marketing and promotions arm of the United States cotton industry, formally re-launched its 26-year-old flagship brand Cotton USA in the Philippines. And as Cotton Council International President Dahlen Hancock says their brand has been highly successful. The new generation of consumers needs to hear why cotton is such a wonderful product and why U.S. cotton is the premier cotton for textile and garment manufacturers and consumers. Usage of raw US cotton has reduced in Philippines but in the consumer and retail side, Philippines is stronger than Thailand.