World organic cotton production grew by 56 per cent last years, reveals Textile Exchange. Organic cotton makes up 0.7 per cent of total cotton production worldwide and involves more than 1,82,000 farmers. The number of facilities certified to voluntary organic standard also rose, with facilities certified to the Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS) up 15 per cent and those following the Textile Exchange’s Organic Content Standard up 16 per cent. While 19 countries now boast of organic cotton production, 98 per cent is concentrated in seven countries: India, China, Kyrgyzstan, Turkey, Tajikistan, the United States and Tanzania. India, Tanzania, Turkey, Kyrgyzstan and China lead the way in transitioning land to organic. About 44 per cent of the growth in India’s production is attributed to its increase in the proportion of certified land used to grow cotton, which increased to 70 per cent from 45 per cent.
One of the biggest obstacles for organic farmers remains access to cotton seed that hasn’t been genetically modified, especially in India and China. Organic cotton is also seen as a component in addressing global climate change.
Textile Exchange is a global non-profit that creates leaders in the sustainable fiber and materials industry. The organisation collects and publishes critical industry data and insights that enable brands and retailers to measure, manage and track their use of preferred fiber and materials.