Textile News



To create more sustainable, traceable cotton.


The REEL Cotton Programme is a 3-year modular program for farmers with Sustainable Agricultural Practices (SAP) at its core. It has four key focus areas: – Agronomic training – Social mobility and engagement – Supply chain verification – Brand reputation

Producing Countries (2016/17 unless otherwise stated)

China, India, Pakistan, Peru.

Manufacturing Process


Manufacturing Location


Fiber Production 2016/17 (MT)


Growth in production (2016/17 - 2017/18)

143% increase

Market Share of Total Cotton Grown (2017/18)


Projected growth in production

Projected increase

Yield (see accompanying “TE Position” notes)

9.4% average yield increase among REEL farmers compared with control farmers

Rainfed/ Irrigated

Water Management

Promotes water efficiency. 12.5% average reduction in water use compared with control farmers. The REEL Cotton Code requires water used for irrigation of cotton fields stems from sustainable sources and is safe for crop, soil and human health. Farmers are encouraged to adopt measures to optimise water use for irrigation and adopt water resource recharging practices.

Soil Fertility

Promotes soil health and nutrient management through crop rotation and composting. REEL Code requires appropriate measures are implemented to increase soil fertility and avoid erosion of the soil.


Promotes the use of bio-pesticides and bio-fertilizers and reduces the use of chemical pesticides and fertilizers. The REEL Cotton Code requires cotton production to respect ecologically sensitive areas by keeping sufficiently sized buffers around cotton fields. Farmers are motivated to plant trees around farms; diversify their production system through crop rotation and intercropping; plant border crops around the cotton field; and take necessary steps to increase beneficial insects on the farms. NB: CottonConnect is conducting a pilot to measure biodiversity and soil health improvements.

GMOs Permitted?


Use of Hazardous Pesticides

REEL farmers are trained in pest management and reduction of harmful chemical use. Training is provided on organic pesticides (e.g. neem spray). Use of chemical pesticides reduced on average by 17.1% compared with control farmers.

Use of Synthetic Fertilizer

REEL farmers trained in composting, crop rotation and reduction in use of chemical fertilizers. Use of chemical pesticides reduced on average by 12.7% compared with control farmers.

LCA available?

Water consumption; Primary energy demand; Global warming; Eutrophication NB: No LCA data available this year; however CottonConnect is conducting a pilot to measure LCA factors.

Water Consumption (m3/ 1000kg fiber*) or best practices used to conserve water

No LCA data

Primary Energy Demand MJ /1000 kg fiber *

No LCA data

Global Warming (kg of CO2-eq/ 1000kg fiber*)

No LCA data

Eutrophication (kg of phosphate-eq/ 1000 kg fiber *)

No LCA data

Social considerations / regulations

Provides training to produce cotton with respect for human rights principles for decent working conditions; no child labour; application of health and safety principles; gender inclusion. Focus on women empowerment through Women in Cotton programme.

Verification / Certification (farm level)

Developed and verified by Flo-Cert (3rd party).

Chain of Custody (supply chain)

CottonConnect has developed a product called TraceBale, providing traceability from the source of cotton to the finished product. The software tool uses a TraceBale ID to provide visibility of the cotton from the farmers to ginners, and connecting into existing yarn ID systems to provide traceability throughout the supply chain.

Product marketing/labeling

In store and on product marketing.

Consumer recognition

Primarily B2B but in-store marketing.


REEL farmers receive training to increase yield and profit. 7.3% average profit compared with control farmers. In addition to agronomic training, REEL Cotton programmes improve livelihoods through the social intervention programmes including ‘Women in Cotton’, ‘Farmer Business School’ and ‘Health and Safety in Cotton Gins’.

Product marketing/labeling

In store and on product marketing.

Quality perception/ implications

No known quality implications.
Change Language »