About Farm Engagement


Help Us Create Our Benchmarking Tool!

We warmly invite all interested stakeholders to take part in creating a benchmarking tool (see update about TE's new Benchmarking Program below or click here to access the reports) that adds value and contributes to company performance improvement. We have scheduled the consultation phase for November 2015, in time to feed your suggestions into an improvement phase planned for the 2016 Market Survey and Benchmarking program. 

Areas identified for improvement include: strengthening the self-assessment process, more granulation on company scope and coverage, potential move to a modular approach (to support differing portfolios of materials), better standardization of conversion calculations, introducing a company ranking, enhanced functionality of the online tool “Probench”, and expanding upon the guidance material and help functions. 

We welcome your suggestions and recommendations on these areas and more. Your feedback will be important to the improvement and success of this program. To make sure we don’t miss out on your contribution please email Lisa Emberson Lisa@TextileExchange.org


Organic Cotton Round Table 2015 - New Ideas Drive Progress

This year's Organic Cotton Round Table, held in Mumbai, India, was a great success and proved to be the largest and most interactive meeting to date. Almost 200 producers, manufacturers, brands, retailers, and support organizations came together to share news and views on organic cotton. The sheer size of the gathering and the energy on the day left no doubt in our minds that the desire to grow a robust and resilient organic cotton market is greater than ever.

We are delighted to be able to share with you two key resources that summarise the day’s events (also available through the OCRT Summary page). Additional resources, such as the full slide deck, graphic recording and the event program, are available for download through the OCRT Summary page.

 Summary Report (pdf download)   Summary Animation (requires Flash)


Pratibha Syntex Announced Winner Of OCRT Innovation Lab 2015!

The finale of this year's Organic Cotton Round Table was the launch of the new Innovation Lab, developed in collaboration with Change Agency and sponsored by Luminous Energy. Eight shortlisted applicants pitched their ideas in competition for the OCRT Innovation Award 2015 (along with a cash prize of $3,000 to put towards their project or donate to a favorite cause). 

Our judging panel (or “Dragons” for anyone familiar with the TV show “Dragons Den”!) chose Pratibha Syntex as the winner for their project to create an "awakened scientist" in each farmer, promoting independent solution making. Avinash Karmarkar, pictured right, presented this project and kept the room engaged with a range of related props - including the gong you see in this photo!

The title of runner-up was awarded to Dibella and PSP India, who teamed up to start a project to turn textile waste from the cutting room floor into environmental and economically-competitve packaging products. 

Congratulations to all of our finalists, who each inspried us with new and innovative ideas.

If you are interested in entering, or partnering, the Innovation Lab 2016 please get in touch with Lisa@TextileExchange.org for more information. 


Benchmark Pilot Program Phase 1 Released – Cranking Up For Phase 2

In September TE released the findings of the pilot Benchmark Program for Organic Cotton and Preferred Materials, which measured the progress of 57 leading textile companies in their effort to become more sustainable.

The Benchmark program allows companies to track their own progress and also relate it to others’ experience and results in four main areas: Sustainability Strategy, Supply Chain, Materials Usage and Sales and Marketing. Each participating company received a customized, confidential Feedback Report, whilst a Sector Report containing aggregated results was released for the wider audience.

German retailer and longstanding TE member, Tchibo, partnered TE on the delivery of the pilot program. Achim Lohrie, Tchibo’s Director of Corporate Responsibility said:

“We as Tchibo see it as our duty as a business to take on responsibility and initiate change, for example in the cultivation and processing of our cotton. However, it is important that we all work together to change the sector. Therefore, we are proud to support Textile Exchange’s Benchmark Program because it provides further impulse and peer-to-peer learning for the whole sector.”

An overview of the full report is available as a complimentary download. The full Sector Benchmark Report is provided to TE members as a benefit of their membership plus we offer the full report to non-members for purchase ($800 USD). Click here for further details and to access the reports.


Soil Association Releases New Report On Organic Cotton & Climate Change

The UK's Soil Association has released a report, titled "Cool Cotton", on the impacts of cotton on climate change - and specifically the benefits that organic can bring about. 
The Soil Association says that switching to organic cotton could reduce the global warming impact of cotton production by 46% compared to non-organic cotton. Organic cotton would also reduce consumption of scarce fresh water by over 90% and energy use by over 60%. 

Click here to download the full report or here to read the press release. 


New Study Proves Business Case of Organic For Cotton Farmers 

A study of smallholder farmers in Maharashtra state, India, has found that under rain-fed conditions, farmers growing Asiatic cotton can obtain similar revenue and profit to farmers growing genetically modified American cotton (Bt American cotton).

The study, published in Nature Plants, found that farmers growing Bt American cotton (Gossypium hirsutum) obtained slightly higher yields than farmers growing Asiatic cotton (Gossypium arboreum). However, as farmers growing Bt American cotton spent more on seeds, pesticides and fertilisers, the profits generated by farmers growing Bt American cotton ended up being similar to the profits generated by farmers growing Asiatic cotton.

Click here to access the study or here to view the full article about the research written by Oxford Martin School.


Introducing Pre-Organic Cotton

The POC (Pre Organic Cotton) program is an initiative of two Japanese companies kurkku and Itochu. The program supports farmers' transition from conventional to organic cotton and strives to grow the organic cotton market by supporting successful organic cotton businesses across the supply chain.

To find out more about POC click here. Those joining us in Mumbai for the Organic Cotton Round Table will also get chance to hear from POC on the day. 



Organic Cotton Market Report 2014

This week, Textile Exchange released the 2014 Organic Cotton Market Report.  The report reveals that 2014 signified the beginning of a turnaround for the organic cotton market. After three years of steady decline, 2014 saw 10% growth in overall organic cotton production. This news is energizing and a sign that the textile industry is moving together toward finding solutions. Across the industry, we are seeing some noticeable improvement in business practices, stronger communication between supply chain tiers, an increase in certifications, and evidence of longer-term planning to increase sustainability efforts.

Features of the Organic Cotton Market Report include:

  • Top 10 League Tables 
  • Market insights, trends and analysis  
  • Company snapshots demonstrating solutions and success  
  • Update on supply chain and integrity  
  • Global organic cotton production trends  
  • Producer country profiles and easy to follow data dashboards 
  • Producer snapshots illustrating work on the ground  
  • Information about barriers to growth  
  • Insights into new innovative business models and collective action  
  • An overview of sustainability initiatives

Click here to find out more and to access your complimentary Report Overview, purchase the Full Report, or download the Media Release.

If you are a TE Member you can access the full report as a benefit of your membership – simply log in to your account (if you have any problems contact Membership@textileexchange.org). 



To access past News items click here

Farmer In Focus


Established: 1997
Structure: NGO-sponsered Producer Group
No. of Farmers: 542
We have organic cotton: Yes
Crops we grow commercially include: Bissap, Cashew, Cassava/Tapioca, Chilies, Cowpea, Maize, Millet, Okra, Pigeon Pea, Pinenuts, Sorghum, Soya, Vegetables (seasonal)
Farmer message: "OBEPAB promotes organic farming in Benin, West Africa. As one of the pioneers of organic cotton production in Africa, the success of OBEPAB's model is visible in the improved yields."

Farm Blog

The Farm Team brings you a regular digest of the latest developments in organic cotton farming, sustainability, impacts, and responsible business practice. Follow us here.

Latest Blog - Rural Communities In India - Thriving Through Organic

My India Travel Diary - First stop Arvind's organic producers, Akola, Maharashtra (Read on)

Second stop Appachi Eco-Logic Tribal organic farmers, Kabini, Karnatika (Read on)

Highlights from the OCRT 2015 in Mumbai Now Available!






Click here to access our full suite of summary resources.

RELEASED! Organic Cotton and Preferred Materials Sector Benchmark Report 2015

Organic Cotton Market Report 2014:

Organic Cotton Sustainability Assessment Tool (OC-SAT):









Missed our Interactive Webinars? - contact us for details.

Life Cycle Assessment for Organic Cotton: 



Siddhi's Blog

Siddhi is our Junior Ambassador and has started a blog to talk about her dreams for the future of the environment.



Textile Exchange has partnered with ethical clothing leaders Mantis World and Gossypium to produce our first limited-edition T-shirt collection for men, women and children. Funds raised will go towards training programs for organic cotton farmers in developing countries. Find out more!  


Big Numbers

241,697 mt
amount of organic cotton fiber produced in 2010
1.1 %
of global cotton production in 2010 was organic
15 %
increase in organic production on 2009 levels
number of countries growing organic cotton
number of organic cotton farmers in 2010
30 %
better water retention in organic soils
20 %
carbon emission reduction potential of organic soils
40-72 %
compensation potential by carbon sequestration
ave no. of food crops grown by organic cotton farmers
number of toxic or persistent chemicals used in organic
28 %
of crops grown for 'own use' by organic cotton farmers
>75 %
organic cotton farmers reported to be food secure
35 %
of the worlds textiles are made from cotton
40 %
of textile impacts are from growing cotton
25 %
of the earth's biodiversity lives in the soil

Engage Newsletter

  • World Environment Day: Think.Eat.Save.
  • An agro-ecological vision for US agriculture
  • Q&A with the man who set up Esprit: Doug Tompkins
  • Latest updates from Benin
  • Women farmers in organic cotton agriculture
  • Alice's Diary
  • Día Mundial del Medio Ambiente 2013 –Piensa. Come. Ahorra.
  • Una visión agroecológica para la agricultura de Estados Unidos
  • Solo una finca hermosa es una buena finca
  • Vuelve el debate sobre los organismos genéticamente modificados en Benín
  • Juntos somos más fuertes: La creación de una plataforma entre productores de algodón orgánico y de comercio justo en Benín
  • Mujeres agricultoras de algodón orgánico
  • El diario de Alicia: aventuras en las tierras de Perú
  • Journée Mondiale de l’Environnement 2013 – Pensez, Mangez, Préservez
  • Une vision agro-écologique de l’agriculture des États-Unis d’Amérique
  • Seule une belle ferme est une bonne ferme
  • Le retour du débat sur les OGM au Bénin
  • Ensemble nous sommes plus forts : Mise en place d’une Plate-forme des producteurs et productrices de coton biologique et équitable au Bénin
  • Les femmes productrices de coton bio
  • Le carnet de route d’Alice les aventures au Pérou
  • New Collaborative Learning Series
  • Meet Alice dos Santos
  • Soil Association 2013 Organic Market Report
  • Government Policy in West Africa
  • Indo-African Forum
  • Brazilian know-how in support of cotton farmers
  • Nueva serie de aprendizaje colaborativo – Centrarse en el abastecimiento
  • Informe sobre el mercado ecológico en 2013 de la Soil Association
  • ¡Encantado de conocerte!
  • Algodón orgánico y política gubernamental en África Occidental: Benín entra en una nueva era
  • Una exposición diferente
  • Foro indio-africano y el Programa de asistencia técnica para el algodón
  • Un proyecto de 20 millones de dólares tiene por objeto transferir el saber hacer brasileño en apoyo a los agricultores del algodón
  • NOUVELLE série sur l’apprentissage collaboratif - Mettre l'accent sur l'approvisionnement
  • Le Rapport 2013 sur les Marchés Bio de l’Associations des Sols
  • Ravi de faire votre connaissance !
  • Coton biologique et politique gouvernemental en Afrique de l’Ouest : le nouvel âge du coton biologique au Bénin.
  • Une exposition à objectifs multiples : Textile &Bijoux
  • Le Forum Indo-Africain et le Programme d’Assistance Technique du Coton
  • Un projet de $20 millions a pour but de transférer le savoir-faire brésilien pour soutenir les producteurs de coton.
  • Final Organic in Action Released
  • A Word From Our Members
  • Africa: Organic & FairTrade Cotton Production and Trade
  • India: A Renewed Philosophy
  • Latin America: Trends for 2012 and Predictions for 2013
  • Este mes se publica la última historia de “Acción Orgánica”
  • El informe reclama una nueva agenda de desarrollo para la agricultura a pequeña escala
  • Nuevas directrices para productos orgánicos
  • Producción y comercio de algodón orgánico y de comercio justo en África: acabar con el estancamiento en 2013
  • Una filosofía renovada
  • América Latina 2012
  • Mensaje de Arun Chandra Ambatipudi: ¡Juntos podemos hacer del mundo un lugar más sano!
  • Mensaje de Orlando Rivera – Fundador de Bergman Rivera y nuevo miembro del Consejo de Administración de TE
  • Dernière édition ce mois-ci de la rubrique « Le Bio en Action »
  • Un rapport lance un appel pour un nouveau programme de développement de l’agriculture à petite échelle
  • Nouvelles directives pour le Bio
  • Coton Bio et Équitable en Afrique : Arrêt de la stagnation en 2013
  • Une philosophie renouvelée
  • Amérique Latine 2012
  • Un mot d’Arun Chandra Ambatipudi : Ensemble nous pouvons faire du monde un endroit plus sain !
  • Un mot d’Orlando Rivera – Fondateur de Bergman Rivera, et nouveau membre du conseil de TE
  • 2012 Sustainable Textiles Conference
  • Organic Cotton Round Table
  • Global Organic Cotton Campaign Launched
  • Seed Freedom: A Global Citizens’ Report
  • Cotton Industry holds Sustainability Conference
  • Comparing Organic and Conventional Cotton Production Systems in Benin
  • Mesa redonda sobre algodón orgánico de Textile Exchange
  • Campaña global en favor del algodón orgánico lanzada por la Soil Association y GOTS
  • Libertad de semillas: un informe global para los ciudadanos
  • La industria del algodón se centra en la sostenibilidad
  • Innovación para la seguridad alimentaria, la adaptación al cambio climático y la mitigación de la pobreza
  • La Table Ronde sur le Coton Bio de Textile Exchange
  • Une campagne mondiale sur le coton bio est lance par la Soil Association et GOTS
  • La Liberté des Semences : Un Rapport des Citoyens du Monde
  • L’Industrie du Coton se Focalise sur la Durabilité
  • Recherche sur les technologies innovatrices, les pratiques et stratégies pour la sécurité alimentaire, l’adaptation aux changements climatiques et la réduction de la pauvreté
  • Textile Exchange - Farm Update
  • Announcement: Round Table on Organic Cotton
  • Benin: The challenge of remaining an organic cotton farmer
  • “Weaving is my destiny” ... adding value to cotton, locally
  • Interview with Carlos Tonon, Manager of Verde Textil - Argentina
  • Monitoring of genetically modified cotton in Paraguay
  • APEDA release Organic Textile Certification Standard
  • Organic in Action: Appachi and SKS farmers make way for wildlife
  • The effects of climate change on cotton production in Latin America
  • Noticias de nuestro encuentro de fincas
  • Benín: El desafío de seguir siendo un agricultor orgánico en un sector algodonero altamente subvencionado
  • “Tejer es mi destino” ... añadiendo valor al algodón, localmente
  • Entrevista a Carlos Tonon, gerente de Verde Textil - Argentina
  • Monitoreo de algodón OGM: El SENAVE habilitó el uso de algodón transgénico en Paraguay
  • La APEDA crea el estándar de certificación para textiles orgánicos
  • Acción Orgánica: Agricultores de Appachi y SKS ceden tierra a la fauna salvaje
  • Cambio climático: Los efectos del cambio climático en la producción de algodón en América Latina
  • Les nouvelles de l’interface des producteurs
  • Bénin : Le défi de rester un cultivateur de coton bio dans un environnement d’un secteur du coton fortement subventionné.
  • « Le tissage est mon destin »... valorisation locale de la fibre de coton.
  • Interview avec Carlos Tonon, Directeur de Verde Textil - Argentine
  • Suivi du coton génétiquement modifié : Le SENAVE autorise l’utilisation de coton génétiquement modifié au Paraguay.
  • APEDA publie la Norme de la Certification du Textile Bio.
  • Le Bio en Action : Les producteurs d’Appachi et SKS donnent la priorité à la faune sauvage.
  • Les Changements Climatiques : Les effets des changements climatiques sur la production de coton bio en Amérique Latine.
  • FUTURE SHAPERS: Introducing Dibella
  • INTERVIEW with Vandana Shiva
  • NEW STUDY: Comparing yields of organic and conventional
  • NEW Improved Producer Group membership services
  • SPECIAL FEATURE: Rio +20 – “The Future We Want”
  • REGIONAL UPDATES:News and views
  • “Modeladores del Futuro”: le presentamos Dibella
  • ENTREVISTA con Vandana Shiva
  • NUEVO ESTUDIO: Comparando las cosechas de la agricultura orgánica y convencional
  • Fincas y Fibra: notificación de los informes regionales
  • ARTÍCULO ESPECIAL: Río +20 – “El futuro que queremos”
  • Future Shapers vous Présente : Dibella
  • INTERVIEW avec Vandana Shiva par Bernward Geier
  • NOUVELLE ÉTUDE : Comparaison des rendements de l’agriculture bio et conventionnelle
  • Production & Fibre : annonce des rapport régionaux
  • LES ÉVÉNEMENT SPECIAL : Rio +20 – « L’avenir auquel nous aspirons »
  • Point Régional
  • Anvil Knitwear sponsors the Farm Hub
  • Cotton Conversations
  • Cotton Futures: Visioning workshop
  • The year of the co-operative
  • Comparing organic and conventional cotton systems in Benin
  • Controlling pests in organic cotton
  • Corseda: organic silk project
  • India, the Cotton Export Ban and Thereafter
  • Anvil Knitwear patrocina el Enlace de Fincas
  • Boletín GOTS
  • Plataforma Comunitaria Mundial del Algodón Orgánico
  • Conversaciones del algodón
  • Futuro del algodón: Taller para visionarios
  • Guía para expertos sobre el algodón y la sostenibilidad
  • El año de la cooperativa
  • 4ª Conferencia Internacional sobre el desarrollo del sector orgánico en Europa central y oriental y en Asia central
  • 2ª Conferencia Orgánica de África
  • Comparación de los sistemas convencional y orgánico en Benín
  • Control de plagas en el algodón orgánico
  • Corseda: Proyecto de seda orgánica
  • India: La prohibición a las exportaciones del algodón y lo que vino después
  • Anvil Knitwear le sponsor de l’Interface des Producteurs
  • La newsletter de GOTS
  • La Plateforme Mondiale de la Communauté du Coton Bio
  • Conversations sur le coton
  • L’Avenir du coton : l’Atelier de visualisation
  • Le Guide des initiés sur le Coton et la Durabilité
  • L’Année des Coopératives
  • La 4e Conférence Internationale sur le développement du secteur biologique dans l’Europe Centrale et de l’Est et l’Asie Centrale
  • La 2e Conférence Africaine sur l’Agriculture Biologique
  • Comparaison des systèmes de coton biologique et conventionnel au Bénin
  • Le contrôle des ravageurs du coton bio
  • Corseda: le projet de soie bio
  • Inde, l’interdiction de l’exportation de coton et les conséquences

Field Calendar

January - March

Follow the production of organic cotton from soil preparation to harvest.


For each month see what is going on in the fields around the world. For a general introduction to cotton growing follow our learning journey.


Want to find out how cotton is grown? Take our learning journey here

January - March

Follow the production of organic cotton from soil preparation to harvest.


For each month see what is going on in the fields around the world. For a general introduction to cotton growing follow our learning journey.

January - March

Follow the production of organic cotton from soil preparation to harvest.


For each month see what is going on in the fields around the world. For a general introduction to cotton growing follow our learning journey.

January - March

Follow the production of organic cotton from soil preparation to harvest.


For each month see what is going on in the fields around the world. For a general introduction to cotton growing follow our learning journey.

Learning Journey

Follow us on a journey to explore the world of organic cotton...
About 1.4 billion people depend on small-scale farming for their livelihoods.