Industrial revolution had a special place for the textile industry. As the population moved from the rural hinterland to cities in search of greener pastures, demand for industrial jobs picked up a rapid pace. Cotton bales were the mainstay of the textile industry. So what exactly are cotton bales and how it is cultivated?
Cotton bales are packages of compresses cotton lint after ginning, tied with metal or wire bands and wrapped in cotton, jute or polypropylene, while the bales are basic tradable units of lint. The weight of a bale varies from country to country. However, the standard measurement is 480 lbs. Cotton fibers are classified in 4 ways-length, micronaire, strength and uniformity. Cotton lentils are essentially used for making various kinds of yarn and clothes. India is one of the leading exporters and producers of raw cotton along with countries like the USA, Brazil and Australia.
Cotton is an important contributor to the Indian economy as the textile industry is predominantly cotton based. Gujarat, Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, TELANGANA, Punjab are some of the leading cotton producing-states in India. In the year 2018-19, cotton production in India stood at approximately 28.70 million bales of 170 kg each. India has continued its position as one of the leading exporters of cotton bales. For the year 2020-21, India’s export could see a jump of around 40% and settle at 7 million bales. The high export figure can be attributed to the rupee depreciation and global price rally. Cotton bales manufacturers and exporters will clinch large contracts laughing all the way to the bank. The affected countries because of a large jump in export will be the USA and Brazil to Major Asian buyers such as China, Bangladesh and Vietnam.
The high demand for Indian cotton can also be attributed to its low price and fine quality. The current rate of Indian cotton stands at 74 cents/lbs, cost and freight basis to Bangladesh, Vietnam and China. Even after large exports, India is expected to be in a surplus position. In October only, traders exported approximately 700,000 bales and contracts for the next 1million have already been finalized. By and large cotton producers have become a highly mechanized process. Still, some small and medium farmers need constant guidance to get the most out of the cultivation and production processes. Some tips to increase the yield during the rainy season have been listed below:
Choose the top variety: A fruit is as good as its seed. It is imperative to select the best variety only with proven fiber quality and maximum yield potential. Discussion and consultation with a local seed dealer is a good idea to start get going. Before finalizing on a particular variety, review the past performances of the seed from online and offline sources. Field conditions must also be taken into account for optimum performance.
Professional planting and seeding: Before the actual planting and seeding take place, care should be taken to make the seedbed free from weed. During the process of seeding, soil temperature and moisture should be at an optimal level to achieve the desired result. Plant the seed at a depth of 1-1.5 inches to absorb most of the rainfall.
Fertility and soil testing: Soil is a critical element of production. Even with the best quality of seed, the output will be less with sub-standard soil health. The PH level and residual nutrients levels are some of the key parameters. Many farmers use fertilizers at will to boost production, but care should be taken not to overdo it as it can affect the fertility of the soil.
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