By Julie Tomascik
A global celebration of cotton will be held Monday, Oct. 7. The launch of World Cotton Day is an opportunity for members, the private sector and the international development community to share knowledge and showcase cotton-related activities and products, according to the World Trade Organization (WTO).
World Cotton Day will be held in Geneva in collaboration with the secretaries of the Food and Agriculture Organization, United Nations Conference on Trade and Development, International Trade Commission and International Cotton Advisory Committee.
This event stems from the application by the Cotton-4 countries—Benin, Burkina Faso, Chad and Mali—to the United Nations General Assembly for its official recognition of cotton, reflecting the importance of cotton as a global commodity.
For Texas farmers, cotton and cottonseed are a major economic driver, bringing in about $2.6 billion.
“In terms of market value, cotton and cottonseed rank third in Texas agricultural commodities behind cattle and calves and poultry and eggs,” Brant Wilbourn, Texas Farm Bureau associate director of Commodity and Regulatory Activities, said. “Cotton plays a significant role across the state, but primarily in the Texas Panhandle, South Plains and West Texas.”
World Cotton Day will give exposure to cotton and all stakeholders involved in production, transformation and trade.
It also seeks new collaborations with the private sector and investors for cotton-related industries and production in developing countries. The day also promotes technological advances, as well as further research and development of cotton.
“Cotton is durable and drought-tolerant,” Wilbourn said. “It’s made for Texas—a relationship grown to last.”
World Cotton Day will be celebrated in countries around the globe. Events will give exposure to farmers, processors, researchers and businesses and their contributions to the cotton value chain, according to WTO.