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Microspin to change lives of millions of cotton farmers
25
Jun '14
Chennai and India based IIT pass-out - Kannan Lakshminarayan, has developed a new cotton spinning technology, which has the power to transform the lives of millions of poor cotton farmers across India, by adding value to the cotton that they produce right at their doorsteps.

Currently, a cotton farmer is able to realize around Rs 90 for each kg of cotton fibre that he sells in the market. The technology from Kannan will help these farmers realize around Rs 1400 per kg of cotton by converting the cotton first into yarn and then into finished fabrics. Alongside, the technology will also create non-farm jobs for the farmers in these units.

Microspin Machine Works, a company founded by Kannan in 2011, has set up one such pilot unit so far in the cotton rich belt of Vidharbha in Maharashtra for a credit cooperative society.

Speaking exclusively to fibre2fashion, Kannan explained, “Our objective was integration of the cotton value chain. We found out that most of the production in the value-chain happens in the informal sector, with spinning being the only exception.

“Secondly, the farmers who produce the cotton are not the ones who get the full value realization. So, we decided to develop a spinning technology which can be installed right in the midst of cotton farming regions. We have developed three machines – Blowroom and carding combined, draw frame and flyer frame. One such unit is able to convert cotton in to yarn, from cotton produced from about 100 acres in a year.”

At the pilot plant in Vidharbha, which is managed by a cooperative with 500,000 members, Microspin Machine Works has installed small cotton gins, followed by the micro-spinning lines, ring frames and cone winders. One unit is able to produce 100 kg of yarn per day. Now Microspin is integrating the plant with sizing, weaving and dyeing units. 

However since the size of sizing and dyeing plants is large, it is necessary to have two Micropsin plants to make the operations viable. Two such units can produce 200 kgs of yarn, which in turn can produce 2000 meters of fabrics per day. This will be the smallest integrated fabric-production mill anywhere in the world.

Speaking about the quality of yarns and fabrics produced with new technology, Kannan says, “The quality of the yarns and in turn fabrics produced from this technology is excellent and has a soft linen-like feel to it. Secondly, the final realization from one kg of cotton fed in to the unit is better than the conventional spinning technologies in use elsewhere”.

“We not only provide the machinery, but also provide training, offer operational support and also provide market support to sell the yarns or fabrics. In short, we provide start to end support”, he adds.

Discussing his future plans, Kannan says, “We see a lot of opportunity since India is the second largest producer of cotton in the world. States like Maharashtra, Gujarat, Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh and Madhya Pradesh are the most promising”. 

In concluding, Kannan says, “This machine has the potential to transform the economies of the cotton producing regions in India and Vidharbha in particular, which has witnessed a large number of farmer-suicides in the recent past”. 

Fibre2fashion News Desk - India

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