The global cotton industry’s production, research, innovation and trade practices are being recognised internationally today on World Cotton Day.
The inaugural day follows an official application by the World Trade Organisation, for the recognition of a World Cotton Day by the United Nations General Assembly, reflecting the importance of cotton as a global commodity.
Cotton Australia CEO Adam Kay said, in an average year, Australia produces enough cotton to clothe 500 million people around the world.
“Cotton is one of Australia’s agricultural success stories that has led to the efficient, responsible and modern industry we have today,” Mr Kay said.
“Australian cotton growers produce some of the highest quality, highest yielding upland cotton in the world, and are supported by leading scientists and researchers,” Mr Kay said.
“World Cotton Day is a valuable opportunity for communities across the globe to recognise our industry’s efficient and effective farm management practices; acknowledge our achievements in sustainability; and congratulate the industry for the work it does in keeping cotton at the cutting edge of agriculture,” Mr Kay said.
Cotton Australia Chairman and St George grower, Hamish McIntyre, said Australian growers are resilient, innovative and adaptable.
“The Australian cotton industry is one of the most advanced in the world, using fewer natural resources than ever before to produce a high-quality crop that is second to none,” Mr McIntyre said.
“This year has been challenging for the cotton industry. The 2019-2020 Australian crop is forecast to be only a quarter of the size it was two years ago, due to the effects of drought and reduced water allocations,” Mr McIntyre said.
National Farmers’ Federation President Fiona Simson said the Australian cotton industry is a dynamic and engaged agricultural industry.
“The Australian cotton industry is relatively small in comparison to other countries, but its influence and contributions are huge in scale, both in terms of its value to Australia as a commodity and for the social and economic benefits it brings to the communities in which cotton is grown,” Ms Simson said.
“The Australian cotton industry is a world-leader and should be proud of its achievements, improvements and efficiencies over the past 40 years,” Ms Simson said.