Cotton research body plans to set up model farms


The SIMA Cotton Development and Research Association (SIMA CDRA) is planning to prepare a Vision 2025 document for cotton development in Tamil Nadu in order to achieve a production target of 25 lakh bales.

Delivering the welcome address at the 36{+t}{+h} Annual General Meeting of the association, SIMA CDRA Chairman, Mr V. Selvapathy, said that a representation has been made to the State Government to spare the land in Pongalur State Seed Farm for research and seed production activities, for granting seed production subsidy for the quality seeds produced from the TMC (Technology Mission for Cotton) fund (or any other fund, as the same was not provided to SIMA CDRA last year), for providing adequate funds for conducting field demonstrations and financial assistance for restoration of the ELS (Extra Long Staple) cotton in the State.

He said the association resolved to set up model farms in the farm lands of its member mills to cater to the mills’ need, as also to demonstrate modern methods of cotton cultivation. “To start with, the short staple karunganni cotton G 27 would be sown in 3 acres at the Rajapalayam Mills this season. This would be ideal for use as surgical cotton,” he said, and added that if the farm lands were offered for raising cotton, the association would explore the possibilities of growing organic cotton, colour cotton and ELS, based on the needs of the mill.


Besides this, the association also proposed to embark into the area of Bt cotton seed production owing to the fast spread of Bt cotton throughout the country. “We are also exploring possibilities of entering into pulses seed production and pesticides distribution, and leasing out the ginning facility at Ponneri factory for commercial ginning, to augment the revenue of the association,” said Mr Selvapathy.

On the industry scenario, he said the requirement of cotton was on the rise due to the constant increase in spinning capacity. However, the government policies relating to cotton and yarn exports during 2010-11 have made the prices highly volatile. The industry incurred a loss of over Rs 15,000 crore in the last five months as against the record profit made at the end of March 2011.

“During the forthcoming season, there is fear that the cotton price might fall below the MSP and the Government has tentatively planned to earmark Rs 13,000 crore to Cotton Corporation of India for MSP operations. The Confederation of Indian Textile Industry (CITI) and SIMA (Southern India Mills Association) have appealed to make the CCI trade policies industry friendly and avoid frequent increase in price, give equal concession (if any) to all concerned and priority to the mill sector and not traders,” he said.