The country's cotton production is estimated at 29.51 million bales in the 2023-24 marketing season, the lowest in 15 years on less planting amid the El Nino effect, the Cotton Association of India (CAI) said on Tuesday.
The cotton marketing season runs from October to September. One bale of cotton is 170 kg.
Cotton production is lower by 7.49 per cent from 31.89 million bales in the 2022-23 marketing season. It is also lower than the government estimate of 31.65 million bales for 2023-24.
Releasing the first estimate, the CAI said, "After 2008-09, this is the lowest Indian cotton crop."
Total area sown to cotton is lower by 5.5 per cent and yield is also expected to drop by up to 20 per cent due to unfavourable weather caused by El Nino, it said.
The CAI has projected cotton production at 8.5 million bales in Gujarat, 7.6 million bales in Maharashtra, 3 million bales in Telangana,1.85 million bales in Karnataka, 1.8 million bales in Madhya Pradesh, and 1.6 million bales in Haryana during 2023-24 season.
Opening stock is pegged at 2.89 million bales as on October 1, while cotton imports are estimated at 2.2 million bales and exports at 1.4 million bales in 2023-24 season.
The domestic demand is pegged at 31.1 million bales during 2023-24 and surplus would be around 3.5 million bales, the CAI added.