As per the CAI estimate, the cotton crop size for this season is 348 lakh bales of 170 kgs. each.
Carry forward cotton stock in the last year was 125 lakh bales, while this year, it was 75 lakh bales and now on 30th September 2022, it will be 40/45 lakh bales.
As of today,kapas rate in India is Rs.9000/- to Rs.10000/- per quintal and cotton farmers are very happy for getting this higher rate. This higher rate of kapas will attract farmers of other crops like soybean, groundnut & chilies towards cotton in a very big way.
In-State like Maharashtra, in 80 lakh hectares, two main crops are sown – in 40 lakh hectares soybean is sown while in 40 lakh hectares, cotton is sown. The soybean rate is Rs.6000/- while the rate of kapas is Rs.10000/-. So, we may see a big shifting of farmers in Maharashtra from Soybean to Cotton.
Same in Gujarat, groundnuts rate is Rs.5500/- and for cotton, it is Rs.10000/-. So, in Gujarat also, farmers will shift from groundnuts to cotton. In South India, the same shifting will be from chili to cotton.
We have received reports from some cotton-growing seed manufacturers that orders and demand of cottonseed from the seed dealers across the country has increased by 50 to 60% and that this demand will continue to increase in the coming months. They said that they have started to increase their manufacturing to fulfill these huge demands.
Looking at the higher rate of cotton and demands of cottonseed, it looks like that by next year, the cotton sowing area will increase by 20-25% in all 10 cotton-growing states in India.
As regards the increase in MSP of cotton, our submission is that it is necessary to protect the interest of our cotton-growing farmers but increasing MSP rates very high at a time will disturb the industry. So, our recommendation for increasing MSP is that the MSP should increase by 3 to 5%.
At the same time, CAI is suggesting to increase MSP of ELS (Extra Long Staple) cotton by 25-30%. This is the need of the hour and this will attract farmers to grow more ELS cotton in India. At present, we are dependent on the import of ELS Cotton.
Also, we recommend price control be removed on the sale of cotton sowing seeds. If price control is removed, the seed company can increase the seed rate and give new technology seed to farmers, which will help to increase our cotton yield which is at present lowest in the world i.e. 475 kg./ha.against the world average of 800 kg./ha.
Our last 5 years production is at standstill at around 350 lakh bales of 170 kgs. each but at the same time, our cotton consumption has gone up from 310 lakh bales to 345 lakh bales. Therefore, if we fail to increase our cotton production in the coming years, we have to import lots of cotton.
A country like Brazil is getting a yield of 1800 kg./ha.with new seed technology. Why can’t India follow this? If necessary, the sowing seed rate should be increased due to new technology and the Government of India should subsidize the seed rate to the farmers.If this happens, then farmers will be very happy and their income will be doubled which is the dream of our Honourable Prime Minister Shri NarendrabhaiModi. This is the need of the hour.