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Textile industry feeling the pinch of increasing cotton prices

According to the Tamil Nadu Spinning Association and reports from other places, the average price of cotton was Rs35,000 a candy (345 kg) in October 2020 and it rose to Rs 55,000 in October 2021, when the new cotton season started.

SHWETA KUMARI | New Delhi | Updated :

The skyrocketing cotton prices have become a cause of concern for the domestic textile industry.

The industry is worried as the units are facing not only a spike in raw material prices but also a shortage in availability.

The price of cotton has gone up from Rs 75,000 (January 2022) per candy to Rs 1,15,000 in recent months, said The South India Spinner Association in a statement. At the same time, the yarn prices also increased from Rs 328 to Rs 399 leading to a loss of Rs 50 to Rs 60 per kg to the mills.

The increase in cotton price is being attributed largely to the low production of cotton this year.

According to the Tamil Nadu Spinning Association and reports from other places, the average price of cotton was Rs35,000 a candy (345 kg) in October 2020 and it rose to Rs 55,000 in October 2021, when the new cotton season started. On 31 December 2021, the price peaked at Rs80,000 and reached Rs 1,15,000 in May 2022. The price of Shankar 6 variety of cotton increased from Rs 45,000 (October 2021) to Rs 95,000 (April 2022).

Harshit Rana a local textile mill owner from Haryana says “farmers are getting high prices for their produce, but we hope the price surge in input cost is distributed across the value chain because the spinners cannot just carry the burden of price rise.”

He said; “although the government has tried its best to support the sector by removing the 11 per cent import duty, the end consumer may also be hurt soon if no further steps are taken.”

Akanksha, a resident of New Delhi, said, “I used to buy cotton clothes at Rs 100 per meter in 2021 but has increased to Rs 200 per meter in 2022.”

Shobha Singh, a Noida-based proprietor of Perfection handicraft, said the cost of cotton-based garments increased by 15 per cent between October 2021 and April 2022 and various factors were responsible for this surge.

“Due to the war in Europe, oil prices increased. So the price of everything, from raw material to fibre to yarn to fabric, has increased. Secondly, the export of cotton increased from India due to decreased business of China which is among the largest exporters. Also due to the rise in global warming. cotton is in demand even in India and after Covid a large number of labourers have still not returned from their native places. So due to the less production and relatively high demand, rates are increasing,” she said.

During an interactive meeting with the newly constituted Textile Advisory Group yesterday,   Union Minister of Textiles Piyush Goyal directed that a portal should be created with inputs of the Cotton Association, Ginners as well as the Confederation of Indian Textile Industry and the Southern India Mills’ Association.