Words from the Industry

It’s clear that supply chain collaboration is needed to close the organic cotton supply-demand gap, and the Textile Exchange Organic Cotton Roundtable is a great way to catalyze this process. As industry assessments highlight the benefits of organic cotton, we all need to be confident in our sources of supply over time. 



Eraina Duffy, Nike, and Chair of TE


 Sustainability is no more an additional option for businesses and many clothing retailers are committed to make all of their ranges sustainable in five to ten years. It is recognized that Organic combined with Fairtrade delivers the most sustainable benefits to the cotton farmers and an aspirational standard for the producers and brands to aim for.  It is the best option to tackle the challenges of land use, water scarcity, and food security. We are delighted and thankful that Textile Exchange is taking the leadership to organize a round table to discuss the pressing issues in sustainable cotton production such as seed availability, need for new business models etc.,  It will also provide an excellent platform for knowledge sharing between various stake holders involved in cotton production as well as clothing supply chain. 




Damien Sanfilippo, Fairtrade International


As a farm member of TE, we take great pride to acknowledge the intense deliberations, partnership, and collaboration we have with TE on various important issues and initiatives. We appreciate TE’s full-fledged commitment towards raising necessary resources, and also working towards policy changes in favor of smallholder organic cotton farming at the level of international brands, generating vibrant communication strategies, and now through this very important Round Table on Organic Cotton.



Arun Chandra Ambatipudi, Chetna Organic


“ By bringing together the most committed brands and organizations, we believe the Organic Cotton Round Table will act as a vital tool for helping to meet the increasing consumer demand for organic cotton. 




Lord Peter Melchett, Soil Association


For organic cotton production to continue successfully we believe that it is vital that farmers are being paid a fair premium for their product and that the lack of quality organic seeds is addressed. Currently this is not happening in India and we are concerned that this will lead to the further decline of organic production. For this reason we are delighted Textile Exchange is coordinating a round table to address these concerns within the industry – and we are delighted to be actively participating.



Rosanne Gray, CottonConnect CEO


More and more proof is coming in which confirms that the growth of yield - especially in India - is not due to GMO but due to improved agriculture and better seeds. The challenges for the organic sector - as the most promising way to reach sustainability  - is the need for committed entrepreneurs to be able to come together and line up the needs of the market with this opportunity organic cotton presents. We see the Round Table as an opportunity to do exactly that.





Patrick Hohmann, Remei AG


"In India and Burkina Faso the seed issue is not just urgent but will decide the future of organic cotton. Until now, there is no secure and long-term commitment from any side to financially support the organic seed chain or organic cotton breeding. All stakeholders need to become active in enabling participatory organic and low-input cotton cultivar testing, seed multiplication and breeding projects."



Dr. Monika Messmer, Plant Breeding for Organic Agriculture, FiBL


PAN UK has pioneered organic cotton for over two decades. Today, organic cotton is at a crossroads. It is poised to move from a niche product championed and subsidised by development funding into a truly mainstream global good. This shift is not without risks – the sector needs to ensure a reliable supply of organic cotton to meet demand, but at the same time the credibility of the product must be maintained and, most importantly, producers must see tangible benefits from growing organic cotton. This Round Table will bring together key actors from all of the different parts of the supply chain to address these challenges and plot a way forward for the sector.  It is a crucial and timely discussion and TE is to be congratulated for taking the initiative and allowing all stakeholders to feed into the long-term sustainable growth of organic cotton.




Keith Tyrell, Director, PAN UK