Editor’s Note: In the second installment of this series, Manish Daga explains to Indian growers why testing is so important to the market price they receive for their seed cotton. Part I can be found here.
Since cotton is such an important fiber, it is essential to know how to identify it. This is possible by visual inspection and HVI machine testing.
In Karanja Seminar COTTON GURU Mr. Manish Daga explained to the Farmers How Cotton testing is important for them before selling it in the Market, as it measures cotton’s moisture, colour, trash, Micronaire (fineness), Strength, Uniformity and Staple length( length of cotton fibre). COTTON GURU is a Certified Cotton Grader and Valuer. He gave live demonstration of Cotton testing by Hand Testing method. The farmers had brought seed cotton samples from their fields. He also explained all the HVI machine test terms with meaning to the farmers.
Later, Daga discussed in details the test reports of seed cottons of various seed companies.These samples were collected from the Krishi Vikas Audhyogik Sanstha and tested in COTTON GURU’s own HVI test laboratory. The reports are as under:
Daga explained in detail about the three major parameters that will impact India’s cotton market:
- Major cotton exports.
- Quantity buying by Indian mills.
- Large-scale seed cotton Purchase by Cotton Corporation of India (CCI), Maharashtra Marketing Federation and Nafed.
Elaborating on each parameter, COTTON GURU informed about his recent visit to Hongkong to attend the International Cotton Association (ICA) Cotton Seminar. As per discussion with prominent delegates from various countries, the international market is down and there are no prospects of bulk cotton export to China and other countries.
Speaking about Mills, there is a power cut of about 50% in Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh where over 70% of the spinning are located. The buying of these mills is subdued and limited.
Regarding large-scale seed cotton purchases by government bodies like Cotton Corporation of India, the Maharashtra Marketing Federation and Nafed, Daga explained growers’ limitation of terms and conditions levied by the government, funds and infrastructure. Although there currently is no purchasing by these bodies in the Akola district, Daga pointed out that farmers have to understand these terms so as to be able to sell cotton to them whenever they do begin buying.
At the end of the Seminar, the farmers promised to be more careful about contamination (trash) and moisture during cotton picking, storage and transportation. They unanimously agreed that value addition and effective marketing were possible only by maintaining quality.
They said that this was the first time that someone had spoken to them about the benefits of quality in regard to market price and method of cost calculation, as well as effective ways to market seed cotton.
These farmers are following the sowing method suggested by Cotton Guru .This includes approaches such as high concentration of plantations per hectare, use of drip irrigation, and reduced usage of pesticides.