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Piyush Goyal Holds Meeting with Textile Advisory Group to Discuss Issue of Cotton Supplies

Goyal urged that factors affecting productivity be addressed in a time-bound project mode, and that the industry participate in a self-regulatory mode. The ginning industry should take responsibility and mandate the use of pheromone trap technology to monitor and prevent the spread of Pink Bollworm pest attacks from gins and oil extraction units to cotton crops in farmers' fields.

Shivam Dwivedi
Piyush Goyal in Meeting with Textile Advisory Group
Piyush Goyal in Meeting with Textile Advisory Group

Piyush Goyal, Union Minister of Textiles, Commerce and Industry, Consumer Affairs, and Food and Public Distribution, met with the newly formed Textile Advisory Group yesterday at the IMC Chamber of Commerce and Industry in Mumbai. The meeting was co-ordinated jointly by the Textile Commissioner and Cotton Corporation of India Ltd.

Upendra Prasad Singh, Secretary Textiles, initiated discussions with the Textile Advisory Group, which includes Senior Officials from the Union Ministries of Textiles, Agriculture and Farmer Welfare, Commerce, Officials from the Research and Development sector, a Senior Official from Cotton Corporation of India Ltd., and stakeholders. The entire textile value chain was represented in the consultations by the meeting's lead associations and experts.

Suresh Kotak, Chairman of the Textile Advisory Group and a well-known veteran cotton person, presided over the meeting of the Textile Advisory Group, which was formed in response to Shri Goyal's directives, on May 17, 2022, during the Stakeholders Consultative Meeting in New Delhi. He emphasized the importance of ensuring seed availability for sowing, particularly new early maturing varieties, as well as the need to revamp the seed system in order to boost Indian cotton productivity from its current stagnation.

He elaborated on potential approaches to increasing cotton availability, both domestically and from other countries. The current position on cotton availability was presented, and a request was made to assist logistics in ensuring timely shipping from three international sources. According to Committee on Cotton Production and Consumption estimates, carry over/closing stock is 41.27 lakh bales, which is approximately 12.66 percent stock to use ratio and equivalent to stock for 45 days consumption. For the cotton economy, it is critical to think and work together on the principle of "I am because WE are."

To address productivity issues, C.D. Mayee, President of the Indian Society for Cotton Improvement, highlighted various aspects of the cotton agro-economy, including the latest PB knot technique to protect cotton crops from pink bollworm attack. Vikas Patil, Director of Extension and Training, Commissionerate of Agriculture, Maharashtra, presented initiatives from the Maharashtra government relating to cotton productivity enhancement, value chain development, and pink bollworm management.

Goyal urged that factors affecting productivity be addressed in a time-bound project mode and that the industry participates in a self-regulatory mode. The ginning industry should take responsibility and mandate the use of pheromone trap technology to monitor and prevent the spread of Pink Bollworm pest attacks from gins and oil extraction units to cotton crops in farmers' fields. He proposed that everyone be sensitized to the mandatory use of pheromone trap technology through the Cotton Corporation of India Ltd.'s extensive network, in conjunction with state government efforts in this regard.

In addition, the Minister urged the industry to develop models for improving ginning efficiency and output. With contributions from Cotton Corporation of India Ltd., Cotton Association of India, Confederation of Indian Textile Industry, and Cotton Textiles Export Promotion Council, Goyal also emphasized the importance of protecting cotton crops from pink bollworm attacks.

To address the need for accurate statistics across the value chain to enable policy decisions, trade facilitation, traceability, and so on, Goyal directed the creation of a portal with input from the Cotton Association, Ginners, Confederation of Indian Textile Industry, and the Southern India Mills' Association. The portal will operate in self-compliance mode. If persuasion and self-compliance do not produce results, 'disincentives' can be built into systems such as Cotton Corporation of India Ltd., not to do any transactions with such defaulters, and any government benefits can be linked to the submission of details.

The central issue of seed quality has been thoroughly discussed, with specific action plans in place for the current season. The Joint Secretary for Seeds stated that enough seed is available to meet domestic demand. According to industry, there is a need to distinguish between right and wrong types. Goyal emphasised the importance of conducting campaigns in farming areas to combat the sale of bogus illegal seeds.

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