Turkey’s 2015 Harvest Report Released

Today, BCI releases the 2015 Harvest Report for Turkey and is excited to announce that BCI Farmers achieved 26% higher profits versus Comparison Farmers despite the continued rise of prices for fertilisers, pesticides and fuel. The Harvest Report can be accessed through an interactive map on the BCI website and details the results that Turkish BCI Farmers achieved as well as contextual factors from the latest harvest.

Highlights from the report include:

  • 7% higher yields despite unpredictable weather patterns;
  • Improved awareness of fertiliser best management practices;
  • 12% lesspesticide usage; and
  • A large majority of farmers possessing an advanced awareness about child labour issues.

Better Cotton is sown and harvested in different annual cycles across the world, which means that harvest data becomes available from different regions throughout the calendar year. When a country’s harvest results are finalised, they will be released on the 2015 Harvest Report map on an ongoing basis.

The next Harvest Report to be released will be Mozambique.

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Better Cotton releases web-based annual report with interactive features

We are excited to announce the launch of our web-based annual report. The BCI 2015 Annual Report provides the latest updates on global numbers, membership and partnership activities, reviews of organizational progress, and our financial statements. We have also integrated interactive and multimedia content to present 2015 accomplishments in an engaging manner.

Key achievements from 2015 include:

» Farmers produced Better Cotton in 21 countries on five continents.

» BCI reached 1.6 million farmers worldwide, a 23% increase from 2014.

» Licensed BCI farmers produced 2.6 million MT of Better Cotton, up 34% from the previous year.

» Membership and retailer procurement grew by 50% and 115%, respectively.

» We launched a formal review of our standard system to ensure it remains relevant, consistent and accessible.

» BCI and our partners invested almost €12 million through the Better Cotton Fast Track Program (BCFTP), supporting 70 farm projects across eight countries.

The report also includes the following dynamic features:

» A video summarising 2015 highlights.

» Two interactive maps that illustrate Better Cotton country highlights and global reach figures.

» Dynamic graphs detailing membership and procurement growth as well as financial information.

”We thank our partners, funders, members and BCI staff for having played such a crucial role in achieving our goals this year and positioning us to make Better Cotton a responsible mainstream commodity by 2020,’ commented Paola Geremicca, Director of Communications and Fundraising.

BCI will continue to report harvest data through our 2015 Harvest Report that is released on a rolling basis throughout the year when harvest results for each country have been finalised.

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‘Real time’ harvest reporting live on Better Cotton’s website

BCI is excited to announce the launch of our 2015 Harvest Report now online in the form of an interactive map that displays the latest harvest results shortly after Better Cotton is harvested in a country.

Better Cotton is sown and harvested in different annual cycles across the world, which means that harvest data becomes available from different regions throughout the calendar year. When a country’s harvest results are finalised, they will be released on the 2015 Harvest Report map on an ongoing basis. Previously, all the results for a harvest year were compiled into a single report that was released late the following year. By releasing Better Cotton results in a timely manner, we will have more opportunities to share the progress we are making towards improving cotton growing conditions globally.

The 2015 Harvest Report is live on the BCI website and contains the latest Harvest Report for Australia. The report notes that during the 2015 harvest season, Australia’s cotton farmers faced severe drought conditions in many areas, which impacted the amount of water available for irrigation. As a result, farmers planted only 48% of the originally planned area (196,698 Ha. vs. 414,000 Ha.). However, a combination of ideal growing conditions, good farm management practices and use of improved cotton seed varieties contributed to record yields up to 2950 kg (15 bales) per hectare and a total production of 499,400 MT (56% of the 2014 crop). Average yields set a record at 11.5 bales per hectare, up from the previous best of 10.1 bales.

The next Harvest Report to be released will be Mozambique at the end of April.

 

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Pioneer member adidas Group exceeds 2015 Better Cotton target

BCI Pioneer member adidasannounced that in 2015 the company sourced 43% of all its cotton as Better Cotton, exceeding the originally planned 40% target. This marks the highest volume in sustainable cotton used in the company’s history.

”As a pioneer member, the adidas Group has been involved with the Better Cotton Initiative from the very beginning. It is exciting to see how Better Cotton is becoming a sustainable mainstream commodity and we will continue to increase the amount of sustainable cotton we use over the coming years,” says Frank Henke, adidas Group VP, Social and Environmental Affairs.

Upon this milestone, BCI applauds adidas’s achievement and celebrates the work of all its members. To date, BCI has over 700 members sourcing and supplying Better Cotton at all stages of the textile supply chain. Led by a group of pioneering organisations, BCI’s members can be proud of their efforts to make a responsible alternative the mainstream norm.

”We are very proud of the work we do with our members. Their commitment to BCI is extremely important to us, as it helps support the work of our farmers and drives demand for Better Cotton throughout the supply chain,” says Paola Geremicca, BCI Programme Director of Fundraising and Communications.

As a BCI Pioneer member, adidas has committed to source 100 percent “more sustainable cotton’ across all product categories in all its brands by 2018.

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2014 Harvest Report released

BCI is pleased to announce the publication of our 2014 Harvest Report. The report details Better Cotton harvest data at global and field levels in 2014, and completes the second of two reporting phases for the year — the first being our Annual Report.

Important highlights include:
» 1.2 million farmers participated in BCI’s programme – up 79 percent from 2013.

» BCI farmers produced 2 million metric tonnes of Better Cotton lint – a 118 percent increase on the previous year.

» Better Cotton made up 7.6 percent of global cotton production.

» Better Cotton was grown in 20 countries worldwide, five more than in 2013.

» As an example of country results, Better Cotton farmers in Pakistan used 15% less pesticide, 19% less synthetic fertiliser, 18% less water and increased their profits by 46% as compared to comparison farmers.

We’re extremely proud of everything we achieved in 2014. Most notably the year’s results confirmed the underlying premise of our model: higher yields, reduced inputs of synthetic pesticides and fertilisers, resulting in much higher income for our farmers. As the 2015 season continues, we’re making strong progress towards establishing Better Cotton as a more sustainable mainstream commodity.

A note on timing: Better Cotton is sown and harvested in different annual cycles across the world, and when releasing data, we must first collect, check and collate information from every region. For this reason, our 2014 harvest data is ready for distribution late in the following year.

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Better Cotton 2014 Annual Report Released

We are pleased to announce the publication of the BCI 2014 Annual Report. This is the first of two reporting stages in 2014, in which you will find the latest updates on global numbers, membership and partnership activities, reviews of our organisational progress, and our financial statements.

Highlights include:

» The total number of farmers licensed to produce Better Cotton was 1.2 million – a 65% increase on 2013.

» 8.7% of global cotton production (or 2.3 million Metric Tonnes of lint) was grown to the Better Cotton Standard in 20 countries.

» We brought on more new members than our target, with 468 Members contributing the success of BCI – almost a 50% increase on 2013.

» A “Demand Strategy’ was launched, aiming to recruit more Retailer and Brand Members creating increased demand for Better Cotton throughout the supply chain.

» We became a member of the ISEAL Alliance.

We’re really proud of our progress to date in 2014. There will be more to report when we release the BCI 2014 Harvest Report (containing data from the field), which you can look forward to reading in September 2015.

To read the BCI 2014 Annual Report in Full, click here.

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Better Cotton Announces Results of First Year US Pilot

BCI has completed a small scale pilot of its standard system in the USA during 2014. Twenty-two farms in four states (Arkansas, Texas, New Mexico and California) took part in the pilot project, and together produced over 11,000 metric tons (26 million lbs) of cotton lint. The farms each completed a self-assessment and hosted an on-farm visit by independent, 3rd party verifiers to confirm they meet BCI’s criteria for environmental stewardship and working conditions. All participants who completed the process are now licensed to sell Better Cotton to participating merchants.

Cheryl Luther of Black Oak Gin in northeastern Arkansas guided three farmers through the licensing process. She said ”I was skeptical at first. I’ve been a sustainability proponent for years, and I understood the brands want transparency and verification, but I thought the process and paperwork would be a burden. In the end, though, it was simple and easy to gather.” One of the three Black Oak growers, Danny Qualls of Lake City, Arkansas said,” I love growing cotton, but the market needs more innovative ideas like BCI.”

Cannon Michael, owner of Bowles Farming Company in California’s San Joaquin Valley, said, ”We take pride in the way we treat our employees, care for the environment and strive to improve. I think this opportunity to “prove up’ against independent standards and verification is good for us and our customers.” Bowles is one of six participating farms that are members of Supima, the US pima cotton marketing association. Supima president Jesse Curlee echoed Michael’s sentiments saying, ”We’re on board for very practical business reasons. British retailer Marks & Spencer is a key customer for us. They’re also a BCI member and sourcing Better Cotton is a key component of their corporate sustainability strategy.”

CEO of BCI Patrick Laine added, ”We’re delighted with the collaboration and efforts of cotton growers in the US to bring US Better Cotton to the supply chain. This responds to a request of many global brands. The first volumes of US Better Cotton to reach the market were purchased immediately – and we intend to satisfy that demand in coming years by expanding the supply of US Better Cotton.This is an extremely positive start, and we look forward to working with more USA farmers on continually improving practices that are directly relevant to their businesses.”

In West Texas, twelve members of the Hart Producers Coop Gin participated in the project. Gin Manager Todd Straley said, “We see this as a great way to stay ahead of the curve, being responsive to changing market expectations and demonstrating our growers’ commitment to sustainability and continual improvement.”

BCI has been working in other cotton growing regions of the world since 2010 to promote measurable and continuing improvements for the environment, farming communities, and their economies. Last year, spurred by strong interest from major brands and retailers using Better Cotton as a supply benchmark, we chose to expand our focus to include the US.

BCI will convene a multi-stakeholder process early in the new year to review the lessons learned during the pilot, and receive feedback from all parties engaged in this project or interested in BCI’s development.

 

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Better Cotton 2013 Harvest Report now available for download in Chinese and French

We are very pleased to announce the publication of theBCI 2013 Harvest Report in Chinese and in French. In answer to feedback from our members, we are reporting on our harvest data – at global and country level – in additional languages for the very first time. These reports are a key contribution in making Better Cotton accessible to a global market. Visit our Annual Reports web page to download and share the reports.

The English language version of the 2013 Harvest Report was released in September.

Some highlights include:

» Almost 680,000 farmers met the standard to earn a licence to grow Better Cotton. That’s a 400% increase on last year thanks to great progress made on successful global partnerships.
» 905,000 metric tonnes of Better Cotton were produced, included that produced under two newly benchmarked standards: Cotton made in Africa (CmiA) and the ABR standard in Brazil.
» Better Cotton was produced in 15 countries worldwide.
» Independent case studies were conducted in China and Mali, including qualitative feedback from the farmers themselves on the most significant changes they have seen since becoming part of the Better Cotton movement.

Better Cotton is sown and harvested in different annual cycles all over the world, which means we provide the results of a harvest late on in the following year when all data has been collected, checked and collated.

We’re incredibly proud of everything we achieved on entering our Expansion Phase in 2013, and as the 2014 season continues we’re making strong progress towards making Better Cotton a more sustainable mainstream commodity.

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Better Cotton 2013 Harvest Report released

We are very pleased to announce the publication of the BCI 2013 Harvest Report. This report details our harvest data at global and field level, and completes the second of two reporting stages for 2013 – the first being our Annual Report.

Some highlights include:

» Almost 680,000 farmers met the standard to earn a licence to grow Better Cotton. That’s a 400% increase on last year thanks to great progress made on successful global partnerships.
» 905,000 metric tonnes of Better Cotton were produced, included that produced under two newly benchmarked standards: Cotton made in Africa (CmiA) and the ABR standard in Brazil.
» Better Cotton was produced in 15 countries worldwide.
» Independent case studies were conducted in China and Mali, including qualitative feedback from the farmers themselves on the most significant changes they have seen since becoming part of the Better Cotton movement.

Better Cotton is sown and harvested in different annual cycles all over the world, which means we provide the results of a harvest late on in the following year when all data has been collected, checked and collated.

We’re incredibly proud of everything we achieved on entering our Expansion Phase in 2013, and as the 2014 season continues we’re making strong progress towards making Better Cotton a more sustainable mainstream commodity. If you wish to read more, go to our Annual Reports page by clicking here.

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Better Cotton Fast Track Program Release Annual Report

”Better Cotton Fast Track Program” (BCFTP) was founded in 2009-10 by a group of leading private and public organizations, convened by IDH the Sustainable Trade Initiative. Through a demand-driven strategy based upon the financial commitment of leading retailers and brands and match-funded by a group of public funders the Program invests in farmer capacity building projects across the globe. In 2013, the Fast Track Fund supported over 30 farm level projects in six countries, reaching out over 200,000 farmers who have produced almost 750,000 metric tons of Better Cotton.

For more information on the progress of BCFTP in its 4th year, we are pleased to share the Better Cotton Fast Track Program End Year Report 2013 – “Mainstreaming the Midstream’.

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Better Cotton 2013 Annual Report released

We are very pleased to announce we have published the BCI 2013 Annual Report. This is the first of two reporting stages in 2013, in which you will find the latest updates on global numbers, membership and partnership activities, reviews of our organisational aims, and our financial statements. Highlights from 2013:

  • 300,000 farmers in 8 countries received training on Better Cotton production principles
  • 810,000 metric tonnes of Better Cotton was licensed
  • The number of BCI member organisations doubled to 313
  • A new Assurance Program was launched
  • Strategic partnerships were made with the Cotton made in Africa (CmiA) program and the ABR standard in Brazil, meaning that both CmiA and ABR cotton can be sold as Better Cotton.

We’re really proud of everything we achieved so far in 2013. We’ll hopefully have a lot more to celebrate when we release our 2013 Harvest Report (containing the data from the field), in September. If you wish to read more, you can go to our Annual Reports page by clicking here.

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Better Cotton Annual and Harvest Reports. A new process.

In September 2013 we published our very first Harvest report. We wanted to simplify how we communicate, focusing on the harvests rather than the growing seasons. As of 2014 , we will be breaking this document down further, dividing our reporting into an Annual Report for 2013 – to be published in March/April – and our Harvest Report (containing the data from the field,) – to be published in September.

We’re really proud of everything we achieved in 2012. If you wish to read more about it, you can go to our Annual Reports page by clicking here.

 

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