New Sourcing Cotton Resources from CottonWorks™ Provide Sustainability and Quality Insights
February 23, 2021

New Sourcing Cotton Resources from CottonWorks Provide Trade, Sustainability and Quality Insights

Where Sustainably Sourced Cotton is Grown & Traded

The CottonWorks Sourcing Cotton webpage provides vital statistics about the geography of worldwide cotton production and trade. In particular, it notes:

  • India, China, U.S. and Brazil account for 75% of global cotton production
  • U.S., Brazil, India and West Africa account for 80% of raw cotton exports
  • China, Bangladesh, Vietnam and Pakistan account for 80% of cotton raw imports

Sustainable cotton sourcing based on geography can be difficult as there are no uniform global cotton traceability practices. U.S. cotton offers the most transparency with a unique bale identification number and associated fiber quality data available for every bale.

To learn more, watch our webinar on cotton sourcing strategies.

China’s Role in Cotton Growth, Production & Trade

The CottonWorks Sourcing Cotton webpage takes a close-up view of cotton sources within Chi-na because of its massive role in the global cotton supply chain. China is the world’s:  

  • Second largest cotton grower
  • Largest cotton spinner
  • Largest manufacturer of fabric
  • Largest apparel exporter

Because China dominates so much of the cotton supply chain, it can have a large effect on textile companies, brands and retailers anywhere in the world. Two dynamics companies should understand when sourcing cotton from China are:  

  • The Chinese reserve system and its ability to affect cotton pricing
  • The Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region’s (XUAR) proportion of China’s cotton production and the flow of cotton and cotton yarn from this region

To learn more, watch our webinar on cotton sourcing strategies.  


Sourcing Cotton with the Right Fiber Properties

Because cotton is a natural fiber there is variation in fiber properties that are important to know and manage in manufacturing. To ensure consistent, quality production, apparel companies have to allow agility within their supply chain for manufacturers to acquire the right fiber qualities. CottonWork’s fiber science webpages explain how growth and development of a cotton plant and cotton harvesting and ginning can affect fiber properties.


The new sourcing resource also discusses conventional and organic cotton in the context of sustainability strategies. It notes that growing practices for both often include soil health building practices, integrated pest management, water efficiency and cover crops—the key components of sustainable cotton production.


To learn more, watch our webinar on cotton sourcing strategies.


Cotton sourcing affects a company’s product quality, environmental footprint, social responsibility and financial performance. 


The work we do is possible because of collaborations with researchers like these and partnerships with people all throughout the value chain. Ready to commit to sustainably produced cotton? Become a Cotton LEADSpartner today. Interested in doing even more? Contact us for ideas to get the most out of sustainable cotton and your partnership with Cotton LEADS.


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