Interview with Nayan Mirani

Face2Face
Nayan Mirani
Nayan Mirani
President
Cotton Association of India
Cotton Association of India

What sort of market is Suvin Ratna aimed at? How is Suvin Ratna being promoted in India and abroad?

Suvin Ratna is an exclusive, premium brand. It is presented as a high-end corporate gifting pack. Given that this precious fibre-Suvin-was dying due to inadequate marketing efforts, CAI has created this exquisite brand Suvin Ratna. The sole objective of creating this brand is to allow the potential user to experience this super fine, long staple cotton Suvin, and thereby create awareness for this extralong staple cotton from India. Suvin Ratna offers a superior and premium experience. CAI is selling this by spreading awareness through word of mouth and by staging exhibition stalls at trade events. Since Suvin Ratna is packaged as a gift pack, festivals become an important time for marketing this brand. Extra efforts are being made to market Suvin Ratna before Diwali and Christmas.

Can Suvin Ratna be made as a blended product? What are the different uses of Suvin Ratna?

Suvin can be blended with other fibres; however, Suvin Ratna has been showcased as made from 100 per cent Suvin. Suvin Ratna can be used for all kinds of high-end fashion garments for both men and women.

Is there a certification for Suvin Ratna that is required?

A certificate of authenticity is issued by CAI and accompanied with each Suvin Ratna shirting material. It authenticates that the fabric is made using 100% Suvin. Every shirt can actually be traced to the specific farmer that has grown Suvin. The certificate enclosed with Suvin Ratna also authenticates the purity of the fabric across the entire value chain from the farm to the mill.

What is the marketing and advertising policy? What is the budget for promotion for Suvin Ratna?

Only CAI currently markets Suvin Ratna. We are open to other marketing channels/partners provided ownership of the brand rests solely with CAI. Currently, Suvin Ratna is marketed on a shoestring budget. This brand is the true embodiment of the Prime Minister's 'Make in India' vision. 

Suvin is the pride of India and Suvin Ratna is the 'Jewel of Cottons' and 100% 'Made in India'. The American government has spent millions of dollars to promote American Pima. Suvin Ratna is arguably better than American Pima or Egyptian Giza. The right push and assistance from the government will make the brand stronger, increase awareness and be a feather in the Prime Minister's dream of Make in India. If Suvin becomes the 'showcase' of Indian cotton, it will have a positive trickle-down effect on Indian cotton at large. All of this will also motivate the farmers to grow more Suvin and get better realisation for their crop. 

Will there be a special tag for garments with Suvin Ratna?

A unique Suvin Ratna tag is encased in each Suvin Ratna shirting material. The user can proudly stitch the same on the collar of their bespoke Suvin Ratna shirt.

Please tell us about the future plans in promoting this fibre.

CAI will continue to do its role in promoting Suvin. However, given the enormity of funds required for this we are obviously restrained in our efforts. If the government of India or large brands support this initiative, we will obviously be more aggressive in marketing and promotions.

Which fibre is Suvin Ratna competing with in India and the world?

There is no comparison of Suvin and Suvin Ratna with any fibre or fabric.

Globally, the industry is aware of Egyptian cotton and Pima Cotton. Where does Suvin stand as compared to the two? Kindly elaborate on the characteristics of Suvin as compared to the other two.

Suvin Ratna is arguably better than Egyptian Giza and American Pima. The only comparison is available on the length of the staple -Suvin: 38-40mm; Giza: 35-36mm; Pima: 35-36mm.

Why has the CAI remained by and large quiet on Suvin although it has been around for decades now? And why coming out of the closet now?

CAI is a body that provides a range of support services to the entire cotton value chain from the farmers to the mills. About seven years ago, CAI formed a Cotton Promotion Committee with the intent of promoting the benefits of cotton to the end consumers and thereby increasing consumption. Suvin cotton was created by the ingenuity of Indian scientists in 1967-68. The cultivation of Suvin has reduced drastically over the years to just 1,200 acres currently (as mentioned earlier). This is primarily due to lack of awareness of the arguably the world's best, due to which there is no demand for Suvin and hence disinclining farmers to grow Suvin. This is a true loss to our country.  CAI is doing what is feasible in its capacity to create awareness and thereby increase demand of this super fine, extra-long staple cotton.

The Cotton Council of America is very aggressive in promoting its cotton. Will CAI also be as aggressive?

The Cotton Council of America is funded by the government, industry and growers and hence their budgets are significant. If we get support from the government or large brands we can be more aggressive in our marketing initiatives too.
Published on: 26/06/2017

DISCLAIMER: All views and opinions expressed in this column are solely of the interviewee, and they do not reflect in any way the opinion of Fibre2Fashion.com.

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