S.S.D. Cotton Ginners and Oil Mills and Nagina Group, Pakistan
OUR GINNER AND SPINNER PAIR
(download a pdf of this interview here)
GINNER: Mr. Ludoo Mal, Owner of S.S.D. Cotton Ginners and Oil Mills
We have been involved in Ginning since 1994 when we set up Faisal Cotton Factory in Saleh Pat and started work as suppliers of IKEA. S.S.D. Cotton Ginners was set up in 2012 with the latest technology available in Pakistan. We were the first ginner in the region to be registered with BCI.
SPINNER: Mr. Hakim Ali, Raw Materials Manager Nagina Group
Nagina Group was founded on May 16th 1967 with the incorporation of Nagina Cotton Mills Ltd. Since then, we have expanded our operations in textile manufacturing and diversified into other sectors; construction, commodity trading, and financial services. Ellcot Spinning Mills Ltd, Nagina Cotton Mills Ltd and Prosperity Weaving Mills Ltd form the group. Nagina Group has its own gas power plant to fulfil it’s energy requirements.
WHY BETTER COTTON?
LM: Better Cotton is important to our business as;
1.Better Cotton provides us with good buyers.
2.More and more buyers contact us – there is always demand for our cotton.
3.The local supply chain has transformed now that farmers produce Better Cotton.
HA: The Better Cotton Initiative aims to make global cotton production better for the people who produce it, better for the environment it grows in and better for the sector’s future.
HOW DID YOU FIND YOUR SUPPLY CHAIN PARTNER?
LM: We were contacted by Nagina Group with an enquiry regarding an order for Better Cotton. We always maintain a stock, so were able to respond immediately.
HA: Through receiving orders for Better Cotton from various international markets; Turkey, China etc.
DID YOU ENCOUNTER ANY CHALLENGES IN SUPPLYING OR PURCHASING BETTER COTTON?
LM: We receive a list of licensed farmers from BCI. As soon as picking starts, WWF-Pakistan updates us via mail about the availability of Better Cotton. Our agents then go to farmers to procure Better Cotton. There are also large growers as well who are in the direct contact with us.
HA: There is a process in place: First, brokers inform us about the source of Better Cotton, and then we send our cotton selectors to check and verify the quality of the cotton using various technical testing measurements. If the cotton results are up to our standards, we purchase it.
WHY SHOULD OTHER SUPPLY CHAIN ACTORS BECOME BCI MEMBERS?
LM: We are not member of BCI (we are a registered Ginner), however, being so is very good for business.
HA: We see the following benefits from being BCI members:
1. Access to the BCI traceability system.
2.We are listed as registered members on BCI’s website.
3.We have the right to communicate about our membership, enhancing professional relationships with ginners worldwide.
4.We are able to attend various BCI training workshops.
WHAT DIFFERENCES, IF ANY, HAVE BEEN MADE TO YOUR CURRENT BUSINESS AFTER LEARNING ABOUT AND WORKING WITH THE BETTER COTTON STANDARD SYSTEM?
LM: In collaboration with WWF-Pakistan, we conduct training sessions on quality with farmers. Together, we were also able to develop in house lab testing for seed cotton moisture. These practices have contributed to better quality cotton for us. Since being made aware of Decent Work Principles, we have constructed new, improved workers quarters away from the ginning hall, and every day, the factory manager’s first job is to inspect the sanitation facilities in the workers’ quarters. We have improved health and safety measures for our workers and now have a strict process in place to ensure that we do not employ any person under the age of 18.
HA: Workers are under less physical pressure and have improved efficiency. Furthermore, our production fibre quality has improved.
WHAT DO YOU THINK THE FUTURE LOOKS LIKE FOR BETTER COTTON?
LM: As far as the sustainability of cotton production is concerned, the future is very bright. For the farmer, there are two main benefits. Firstly, the farmer has an improved market in which to sell his cotton. Secondly, our area is a desert area dependent on irrigation. Following training, farmers can utilise water saving techniques.
HA: BCI is helping us to improve our production quality as well as assisting us to approach different manufacturers, traders & ginners on an international platform. Nagina group is in the process of launching a 250,000 garments stitching unit with state of the art Tonell washing machines. Our vision is to become a BCI intensive garment supply chain source for International retailers. We will have integrated spinning, weaving, cut, make, sew and trim to provide 360 degree solution for retailers.