Observers from the textile industry have expressed concern over the steep rise of cotton prices in the market and expressed the sentiment that this may result in a slowdown in the apparel business in the current season. Prabhu Dhamodharan, Secretary of Indian Texpreneurs Federation, in a statement disclosed, “While the cotton price reduced by around RS. 3,500 in 100 days, it increased Rs. 2,000 in the past 10 days and now stands at Rs. 42,000 per candy. When the marketing year (October 2018 to September 2019) started, the price opened up at RS. 46,500, which was Rs. 8,000 more than the opening price of the last year.”

He further told, “We learned that many ginning factories in Telangana and Gujarat have stopped their operation as the cotton production has gone down. So, arrival of the cotton bales to Tamil Nadu markets has decreased, and resulted in sudden increase of the cotton price, which has shocked the industrialists. The inflation has already increased price of warp yarn by Rs. 6-7 per kg, and soon, hosiery yarn price will also go up, and subsequently, increasing prices of garments.”

Dhamodharan elaborated, “The Indian Texpreneurs Federation would not ask the government to stop exports or imports of the cotton. But it should take concrete steps in increasing cotton production. While in many countries, a hectare yield 1,400 kg of cotton, in India the yield is only around 500 kg of cotton per hectare.”

In his concluding observation, he said, “Unscientific data collection on cotton production is a bane. The government should work on these two issues to ensure sufficient cotton supply to local market, which would help cotton sales at reasonable prices”.