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Global cotton production may decline in 2018-19 season

Global cotton production is projected to decline in 2018-19 based on lower yields and decreases in harvested area. Consumption is projected to continue to grow riding on global economic expansion, an expected acceleration of consumer demand for textiles, manufacturing growth for cotton, and rising environmental and production costs for synthetics.

Based on these projections, global stocks would decline to 18.2 million tons. Current projections for the 2017-18 season include production at 25.8 million tons and consumption at 25.4 million tons. Most major cotton producing countries have estimated increased planted area for 2017-18 over the previous season. Production increases are coming off gains in planted area rather than yields this season. However, Australia has decreased planted area yet still increased cotton production with a yield growth of 16 per cent.

Major producers, India and Pakistan, with estimated area increases of 16 per cent and 24 per cent respectively, encountered production losses from pink bollworm this season. Global average yield for 2017-18 is currently being estimated at 778 kg per hectare, a 0.1 per cent increase from the previous season, while area increases are 12 per cent greater from the previous season. Current estimates for the 2018-19 season are for production to move to 25.4 million tons and consumption to rise to 26.5 million tons.