There is expected to be an unprecedented scarcity of cotton seeds in the next cotton season in India as there has been a 30-40 percent decrease in seed output this year. Additionally, there is not much surplus to offset the loss.
“Only a preventive policy action can help prevent reduction in cotton cultivation area in the next year,” experts said.
During the monsoon season of 2023, actual sales amounted to 4.4 crore packets (1 packet = 450 grams) compared to the availability of around 4.8 crore packets,” an expert at the Federation of Seed Industry of India (FSII) said.
The industry expected demand to grow to 4.8 crore in 2023 packets from 4.2 crore packets in the monsoon season 2022.
“Seeds output is projected to drop 30-40 percent due to the long dry spell during this monsoon, and in many regions, even germination was an issue,” the expert added.
“Around three packets of cotton seeds are needed for two acres, and to match last year’s acreage of 289 lakh acres, there is a need for nearly 4.3 crore packets of Bt cotton. This will be impossible to meet,” another industry added.
The experts believed that cotton exports should be reduced to make cotton available for the domestic textile industry, as demand is estimated to be higher than production at 31 million bales.
The Cotton Association of India has forecast Indian cotton production at 29.41 million bales (1 bale=170 kg) and exports at 1.4 million bales.