COIMBATORE, AUGUST 13
Despite the country’s stand as the world’s largest producer of cotton for three years in a row, industry sources foresee supply shortfall of the white fibre by 2025 if efforts to enhance its productivity is not strengthened on a war footing.
Stressing the need for a stronger focus on cotton research, J Thulasidharan, President, Indian Cotton Federation (ICF), said, “there is a total lack of agronomy research at present. Australia, for instance, has only 15 per cent of the area under cotton but their productivity per hectare is at least four times higher as compared to India and the trash content minimal.
There is good potential for doubling the yield, but to achieve this, research efforts should be strengthened. Front Line Demonstrations (FLDs) alone would not suffice. The fund allocation for conduct of FLDs was fixed twenty-five years back. The government should set up a dedicated department and review the focus.”
His comment comes just days before the fourth all India bi-yearly cotton conference slated for August 17 and 18 at the Le Meridien here. Organised jointly by ICF and the Indian Cotton Association Limited (ICAL), Bathinda, the two day-event is expected to focus on the two major issues – volume and quality. The theme of the conference is “Indian Cotton Scenario in 2018-19” along with global outlook, said P Nataraj, Vice-President, ICF and Chairman of the conference.
Around 400 delegates from across the country will participate and interact on the cotton situation, acreage, demand-supply equation, price situation and sustainable management. Ginners, traders, brokers and the mill sector will deliberate on fibre quality, volume and other issues which need a business protocol. MCX, the main sponsor of the conference is expected to create awareness amongst the participants on futures trading. “The federation will also be entering into an agreement with MCX for cotton trading,” said Nataraj. (Source: The Hindu Businessline)