By admin       2017-07-26

26 Jul '17 - The Better Cotton Initiative (BCI), a not-for-profit organisation stewarding the global standards for Better Cotton, and bringing together cotton’s complex supply chain, from farmers to retailers, has unveiled the BCI 2016 annual report. BCI farmers produced Better Cotton in 23 countries, across 5 continents, up to 12 per cent of global cotton production. The BCI growth and innovation fund directly invested €4.2 million in field-level programmes and mobilised an additional €4.7 million in co-funding from partners, a total portfolio value of €8.9 million. BCI membership grew to 986 members, representing a 40 per cent increase from the previous year, according to the report. Included in the 2016 annual report are final global and country-level reach figures. In the 2015-16 cotton harvest season, there were 1.5 million farmers, who produced 2.5 million metric tonnes of Better Cotton lint on 3.5 million hectares of land. In the 2016 annual report, BCI has published stories from the field, that show the diversity of issues that characterise sustainable development in cotton production–from vital decent work training in Turkey, to a woman in rural Pakistan who has rose above cultural barriers to become a successful and respected farmer. According to the report, BCI accompanies an agricultural advisor in the cotton fields of Tajikistan, and uncovers cross-country collaboration as Australian farmers gearing up to share their world-class knowledge with farmers in Pakistan. These stories represent just a small selection from the various geographies and contexts where Better Cotton is grown, but they constitute a representative illustration of the work taking place in the field. BCI brings together thousands of organisations, large and small, committed to playing a role in making cotton production more sustainable. In the 2016 annual report, BCI converses with a selection of these organisations like the Civil Society Member WWF (World Wildlife Foundation), and brand member M&S about what instigated their partnership. BCI retailer and brand members Cotton On (Australia), C&A (China), and Woolworths (South Africa), speak about the different ways in which they communicate about their commitment to more sustainable cotton. BCI speaks with farmers in Australia, who explain how being a BCI farmer fits into their overall sustainability strategy. In Turkey, BCI speaks with BCI supplier and manufacturer member, Bossa, who aim to make Better Cotton 90 per cent of their total cotton consumption by 2018.

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