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India to emerge as largest cotton producer

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Coimbatore :With domestic trade estimating cotton production at around 400 lakh bales, India is expected to emerge as the largest cotton producer in the world in 2015-16. Cotton output in all major producing countries in the year, barring India, has been anticipated to be lower than the previous season.

As a result, China has had to vacate its place as the largest producer of cotton to India, according to sources in Southern India Mills’ Association (SIMA), the apex body of spinners in the Southern Region.

Quoting reports of United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), the sources said global cotton production during 2015-16 has been estimated at 23.68 million tonnes, 8.6 per cent lower than previous season production of 25.90 million tonnes.

Cotton production in China and the US has been estimated to be lower by 13.3 and 17.7 per cent, respectively, than that in the previous production.

Though USDA anticipated a marginal reduction in India’s production, trade estimates suggested that the production would be around 400 lakh bales of 170 kg each, taking India to the first position, the sources said.

USDA report on India has estimated cotton area in the country in 2015-16 (August to July) at 11.26 million hectares and cotton production at 370 lakh bales.

It anticipated yield to come down to 524 kg per hectare, lower than previous yield of 527 kg, because of deficient rains in the later half of the monsoon season and instances of pest presence in Gujarat and Punjab, the sources said.

PTI