Cotton output halved

Friday, 21 May 2021 09:35
Cotton output halved

(Togo First) - Climatic hazards, poor seed quality, and the Covid-19 pandemic. These are the reasons that could explain, according to the New Cotton Company of Togo (NSCT) and the national cotton growers organization, the sharp drop in the 2020-2021 campaign, now ending. 

Meeting on May 18-19 in Sokodé, in the central region, major players in the sector announced that this year the sector underperformed, with output falling below the 100,000 t mark, far from the authorities’ ambition to produce over 200,000 t. 

In effect, from 117,000 t in the previous season, this year’s output was 66,000 t, thus 43% less year to year.  

This underperformance comes at a time when the sector has just been entrusted to the Singaporean Olam, which is working hard to achieve the new ambitions inherent in its specifications. By 2025, the objective is to increase the production of white gold to 225,000 t and to substantially increase farmers’ income.  

The government, let’s recall, set the minimum price at which a kg of cotton seed can be sold to CFA235, regardless of the volatility of the commodity on the international market. It also established an automatic system to reevaluate this price when national output rises. 

These are important challenges for Olam, in the sense that, over the last few years, production and global prices have fluctuated, even though since the advent of the NSCT, tonnage has increased by more than 400%.

In Togo, cotton brings in about 50% of agricultural export revenues or an average of CFAF 50 billion per year.

Fiacre E. Kakpo

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