Ease of Doing Business for MSMEs: Union Commerce and Industry Minister, Piyush Goyal held a meeting with the Textile Advisory Group (TAG) on Monday to review the performance of the cotton value chain initiatives and to follow up on the actionable points discussed earlier, as per a report by the Mint. This was his third interactive meeting with the group.
Nagpur-based Central Institute for Cotton Research (CICR), research institute under Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR), presented a detailed plan for improving cotton productivity through a series of initiatives such as farmer awareness programme, High Density Planting System (HDPS) and global best farm practices.
In line with Atmanirbhar Bharat, Goyal said that its time to turn Indian cotton into a brand and create a pull for the Kasturi branded products from consumers. The minister highlighted that the industry should be on the forefront and work on the principle of self regulation by taking the responsibility of branding and certifying Indian premium cotton Kasturi.
Hailing the quality of Indian cotton fibre, Goyal said that the implementation of cotton bales quality control order under Bureau of Indian standards (BIS) act 2016 is key to standardize cotton bales in terms of technical quality parameters and identification of cotton bale traceability for the benefit of all stakeholders.
Industry and its nominated industry body’s work on quality, traceability and branding of Kasturi Cotton was appreciated by the minister. The government will keep supporting the initiative with funds in accordance with the contribution by the industry, the report said.
He also called attention to strengthening testing facilities such as DNA testing and traceability to conform to Kasturi standards. Modern testing facilities for cotton quality standards would be created through BIS and Textile Research Associations (TRAs).
Further, Goyal focussed on the need to introduce advanced technologies related to high yielding cotton seeds and innovative agronomy such as HDPS to enhance cotton’s productivity.
Kapas plucker machine developed by the Southern India Mills Association – Cotton Development and Research Association (SIMA-CDRA) to mechanize picking cotton was also appreciated by Goyal. He urged the textile industry and the Industry Associations to join hands to promote mechanization.
The kapas plucker machine project will be taken by the Confederation of Indian Textile Industry (CITI) with the distribution support from Cotton Corporation of India. Industry Associations and industry leaders in tandem agreed to fund 75,000 handheld kapas plucker machines. Moreover, the Farmer Producer Organisations (FPOs) may be actively involved to empower cotton farmers, as per the report.