Celebration of World Cotton Day in ICAR-CIRCOT on 7th Oct. 2021 as 12th event under DARE- ICAR Campaign for India@75

ICAR- Central Institute for Research on Cotton Technology, Mumbai celebrated the World Cotton Day on 7th Oct 2021 by organizing a webinar on “Cotton for Comfort and Prosperity” in collaboration with Indian Society for Cotton Improvement (ISCI), Mumbai and Indian Fibre Society (IFS), Mumbai. It was the 12th event under DARE- ICAR Campaign for commemorating the 75th Year of India’s Independence ‘Azadi ka Amrut Mahotsav’.

 Dr C.D. Mayee, Former Chairman ASRB, New Delhi as Chief Guest and Dr K.R. K. Iyer, Former Director, ICAR- CIRCOT as Guest of Honour graced the occasion

Dr Sujata Saxena, Director (Acting), ICAR-CIRCOT greeted all the dignitaries and participants and delivered welcome address. She thanked the ISCI and IFS for collaborating in organising this webinar. She said that India is now the largest producer, second largest consumer and third largest exporter of cotton in the world and cotton value chain plays a vital role in our economy. Government is now trying to promote branding of Indian cotton under the name Kasturi which as quality cotton can fetch premium price in world market. She said that apart from fibre value chain, there also exist cottonseed and cotton biomass value chains and in all three there is a good scope for further value creation so the webinar theme is very relevant to all the stake holders. A video clipping about the demonstration on Clean Cotton Picking recently organised at regional unit of the institute at Sirsa, Haryana was shown to the participants. 

Dr. V. Kumar, Former Head, Cotton Research Station, Surat in his presentation on “Cotton and Man-Made Fabrics in India’s Textile Economy and their Environmental Foot Prints” elaborated upon the share of cotton and man-made fibres in yarn and fabric production and compared the energy -water usage and carbon foot prints of both and established the sustainability of cotton textiles. In the second lecture on “Cotton for Comfort” Dr R.P. Nachane, Former Head, QEID, CIRCOT and President IFS explained the unique moisture absorption and other properties of cotton which make these clothes comfortable. He also spoke about the research and test method developed by ICAR-CICOT on this aspect.

 The third lecture was delivered, by Dr C. Sundaramoorthy, Senior Scientist, TTD, ICAR-CIRCOT on “Value addition to Cotton By-products and Biomass for Prosperity” where he highlighted cotton as a multifaceted crop and elaborated upon the various value-added products from the by-products from cotton plants such as oil and meal from cottonseed, particle boards, briquettes, pellets and compost from stalks.

The Chief Guest, Dr C.D. Mayee, Former Chairman ASRB released “Antimicrobial and water repellent cotton face masks” with good particle filtration and breathability developed under the CRP on natural fibres project. and Dr ASM Raja, PI of the project explained its qualities. 

Guest of Honour, Dr K.R.K. Iyer, discussed about the role played by the Technology Mission on Cotton (TMC) in modernization of Indian ginning industry and improvement of cotton quality and called for a second such mission to further improve the cotton quality.

Dr. C.D. Mayee in his presidential address told that CIRCOT has developed a number of technologies in Cotton Value chain which need to be publicised through its Agribusiness Incubation centre so that these can reach stakeholders.

This webinar was attended by more than 130 participants including present and past cotton researchers, scientists, stakeholders from Industry and trade, farmers, Agri-entrepreneurs, ICAR-CIRCOT staff and media persons.

Ginning Training Centre (GTC), ICAR- CIRCOT, Nagpur organised a one-day workshop on “Quality Requirements of Textile Industry for Indian Cotton Branding: Farmers Perspectives” to commemorate the World Cotton Day and 75 years of India’s Independence.

Ginning Training Centre (GTC), ICAR-Central Institute for Research on Cotton Technology (CIRCOT), Nagpur in association with Confederation of Indian Textile Industry (CITI), Mumbai organised a one-day workshop on “Quality Requirements of Textile Industry for Indian Cotton Branding: Farmers Perspectives” to commemorate the World Cotton Day and 75 years of India’s Independence.

Shri G. H.  Wairale, Coordinator, CITI, Mumbai welcomed the guests and briefed about the programme. He informed that CITI was established exactly 50 years ago to serve the cotton farmers for increasing their productivity, quality and solving marketing issues anniversary. He highlighted the various initiatives taken by CITI towards upliftment of farmers of Vidarbha region.  

Dr. S. K. Shukla, Pr. Scientist & Officer In-Charge, GTC elaborated in detail about practices that can significantly improve the cotton quality parameters and revive the past glory of the Indian cotton. He urged the farmers with folded hands that they should avoid adding water into cotton before marketing and also store cotton in non-polypropylene bags so that Indian cotton can be marketed at premium rates in the global market.

Shri Milind Shende, District Superintending Agricultural Officer (SAO), Nagpur highlighted the difficulties faced by the farmers in terms of labour shortage, increased cost of farm inputs, biomass management, etc. He urged the scientists for development of viable technologies for mechanical harvesting of cotton as well as cotton biomass collection and chipping.

Dr. M.K. Sharma, CEO & Whole-time Director, M/s. Bajaj Steel Industries Ltd., Nagpur highlighted various cotton processing machinery and technologies marketed by them across the globe. He pointed out the trash content in machine picked, especially in Australian and US cotton is reduced to 1% from initial over 15-50% trash content using Bajaj machinery. However, Indian cotton, which is having less than 1% trash at farm level becomes 2-4% in bales after ginning. Hence, urged the ginners to employ the right kind of machinery and technology to improve the Indian cotton grades.

Around fifteen progressive farmers and other stakeholders were felicitated on the occasion for attaining higher cotton productivity, producing contamination free bales and value addition to cotton by-produce such as briquettes, pellets, surgical cotton etc.

Shri Prashant Mohota, MD, M/s. Gimatex Industries Pvt. Ltd., Nagpur & Trustee, CITI, Mumbai informed about the 5-10-fold monetary benefits for production and supply of the organic cotton in the international market. He urged the farmers to concentrate on quality parameters and organic cotton production to increase the farm income.  In his lead address, Dr. Y. G. Prasad, Director, ICAR-Central Institute for Cotton Research (CICR), Nagpur thanked the farmers for their contribution to bring India on top with respect to cotton production at global level. He also mentioned that we are behind other countries in terms of productivity and insisted upon the need to increase the productivity by adoption of latest technologies and practices. He further added that High Density Planting System (HDPS) would help in overcoming this issue that will be introduced by the next year positively.