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Volatile prices force farmers to condemn cotton cultivation
Apr '08
Cotton farmers are on the extreme end this time. Ask them about planting seeds for the current year and the answer will be far from affirmative.

Despite seed cotton yield exceeding 260 kilogram per mu, cotton acreage is getting reduced from 220,000mu in the past years to 20,000mu in the present year accounting for a sharp 90 percent decline.

A number of factors have affected cotton production in the recent times, the major one being the fluctuating cotton prices. This has seriously impacted the sentiments of cotton farmers who receive less than 1,500 yuan from one mu of cotton acreage after removing excessive costs.

In the past two years, seed cotton prices have been floating around 5.2 to 5.5 yuan per kilogram. Although, there are 15 local supply and marketing cooperatives and 21 ginners in townships, none have the capacity to purchase the raw material at such exorbitant prices.

As such cotton farmers have to go out or rely on foreign vendors to sell their crops. Besides, with the income of one mu cotton hovering about 1000 yuan, their growing enthusiasm has been seriously hurt.

Moreover, while food and oil subsidy have been implemented by the Government to ensure their stable production, cotton farmers have only received 15 yuan of seed subsidies per mu despite the fact that cotton planting runs more risks and involves longer working hours.

This does not by any means encourage development of cotton production and farmers at large seem more and more reluctant to invest in its plantation.

Fibre2fashion News Desk - China

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