What We Do
“We work hard to make sure the supply chain from farmer to retailer is transparent, efficient, and equitable. Without any of those pillars, the process is unbalanced.”
La Rhea Pepper, Organic Cotton Farmer, Co-Founder and Senior Director,
We provide the following products and services to the entire organic cotton community:
Annual Fibre Report Every year we undertake a global survey on fibre production and publish our Farm and Fibre Report. The Farm and Fibre Report informs interested stakeholders, Brands and Retailers about sourcing opportunities and also raises awareness of issues facing organic cotton farmers in production and sustainability.
Find a Producer - our Farmer Visibility Map To help raise the profile of small scale farmers growing organic cotton we have created an interactive farmer visibility website where you can “Find a Producer” . The map gives organic fiber producers an unprecedented level of visibility and voice in the marketplace.
Engage – Our Global Newsletter Our monthly farm bulletin brings relevant news, views and information to the organic cotton community (goes out to more than 500 farmers, plus a growing list of interested stakeholders) – in English, Spanish and French. Each Issue includes a report from our three key regions: India, Africa and Latin America.
Indicators of Sustainability Our sustainability assessment scorecards use a number of KPIs (key performance indicators) to help organic cotton farmers understand, reflect and act on key issues for ‘sustainable development’. Scorecards are used as a tool for farmers to base conversations about issues, risks and opportunities; within their group and also with brands, buyers and other interested stakeholders.
Promote Farm Diversification One of the many benefits of growing cotton organically, particularly to small scale farmers in developing countries, is the need to grow a number of crops as part of an ‘organic farm system’. Read our Farm Systems Baseline Report and Crop Diversification Report (links at end of page) to learn more about the benefits of diversity to farming communities in terms of ecological improvements, income diversification and food security.
Farmers’ Toolkit Our Farmer Toolkit is a compilation of best practices, scientific research and farmers’ experiences on a range of agricultural and business issues. The full kit can be found in our library. Note: The Farmer Tool kit will be reviewed this year and translated into Spanish and French.
Responsible Production and Trade We have spent considerable time researching price issues, profit distribution, sustainable pricing mechanisms, and business models that maximise farmer income. Our growing portfolio of case studies (in our library) provides real-life examples of successful organic cotton businesses. A new Guidance Document on Responsible Production and Trade will be released later this year.
Annual Global Conference Because brands look at textiles as a whole, rather than fibre by fibre, Textile Exchange now provides guidance on all fibres, not just organic cotton. We bring all our members together once a year at our Global Conference to create connections; leverage networks, share information and demonstrate leadership in effecting positive change. [follow our plans for this year’s Textile Exchange Annual Conference to be held in Barcelona on September 19 & 20].
The Farm Engagement Team carries out initiatives that are common to all Regions, though there may be some differences in the degree of focus and some distinctively regional efforts. Within each of our key growing regions we provide the following:
Field Visits Every year, the Farm Engagement team visit organic cotton projects, for learning, knowledge exchange, and to provide information, training, and field demonstrations.
Project Start up Advice We offer advice and support to producer groups on a range of issues including project design, agronomics, business development and a range of other important issues.
Regional Meetings and Representation In key organic cotton producing regions meetings focus on farming, supply chain, and business management. We incorporate aspects of innovation, drill into challenges and opportunities, and showcase existing best practice.
Advocacy and Policy Representing organic cotton issues and opportunities at local, regional and national level decision-making bodies in both the governmental and non-governmental arena and with professional assosiations.