Cogencis Poll: India 2020-21 cotton crop seen at 38 mln bales, up 4%

Wednesday, Sep 16, 2020


By Kavita Desai


MUMBAI – India's cotton output in the 2020-21 (Oct-Sep) marketing year is seen at 38.0 mln bales (1 bale = 170 kg), according to a Cogencis poll of 13 prominent players in the cotton value chain.


At 38.0 mln bales, the output in 2020-21 would be around 4% higher than the market estimate of 36.5 mln bales for 2019-20. According to the government's fourth advance estimate, cotton production in 2019-20 was pegged at 35.5 mln bales.


Most participants in the poll said production is projected to rise mainly due to higher acreage under the fibre crop and adequate rains in key producing states. Timely and well distributed rains across the country are likely to boost yields compared to 2019-20 season.


The area under cotton in the country was at 12.9 mln ha so far, up 2% on year, according to farm ministry data. Of the total area, around 11.6 mln ha or nearly 90% of the area is under Bt cotton. Sowing has almost come to an end, and so far acreage in most states, barring Andhra Pradesh, Gujarat and Tamil Nadu, has surpassed the normal area for the season.


"Crop in north India is excellent. The fall in sowing area in Gujarat, the largest producer has been compensated by a rise in other states," said C. D. Mayee, veteran agriculture scientist and president of South Asia Biotechnology Centre.


Some participants also expressed optimism that production could top 38.0 mln bales, as the crop condition so far remains good with no reports of infestation or any major damage due to excess rains. Being a sturdy crop, there is still hope of some recovery in the standing crop despite the damages caused by excess rains in Gujarat and Madhya Pradesh.


If weather remains conducive, then India's cotton output may even breach the 2013-14 record level of 39.8 mln bales, some participants said.


Since Jun 1, the country has received 855.8 mm rainfall so far against the normal of 801.3 mm for the period.  


In central India, rainfall has been above normal in most subdivisions. It was 59% above normal in Gujarat, 13% above normal in Maharashtra, 5% above normal in Madhya Pradesh. In north India, rains were 10% below normal in Haryana and Punjab each, and 9% above normal in Rajasthan.


Rainfall in Telangana, the major cotton growing state in south India, has been 38% above normal so far.



As the India Meteorological Department has forecast that rainfall is likely to pick up during the second half of September with neutral El Nino conditions prevailing, monsoon will play an important role for cotton production in the coming months.


"Though the crop condition looks good so far, late withdrawal or prolonged rains in the coming months may have some negative impact on the crop nearing harvesting," said Biren Vakil, head of Ahmedabad-based Paradigm Commodity Advisors Pvt Ltd.


Clear weather conditions over the last 7-8 days have, however, been favourable for the standing crop, said market experts.


The new crop arrivals have started hitting the spot markets in north India and are likely to gain momentum in October. In other producing states, the crop is expected to start arriving in the markets from mid-October.


Summary of the Cogencis poll on India 2020-21 (Oct-Sep) cotton output:

* Range of expectations: 36.0-40.0 mln bales for 2020-21, against 35.0-37.0 mln bales for 2019-20

* Mode: 38.0 mln bales vs 36.5 mln bales

* Mean: 37.6 mln bales vs 36.5 mln bales

* Median: 38.0 mln bales vs 36.5 mln bales


Following are the output estimates for 2020-21, in mln bales by polled entities:


Poll Participants





All India Cotton Seed Oil Industries Association38.0-38.536.5
Central Institute for Cotton Research36.0-38.036.0-37.0
Cotton Corporation of India36.035.0
Global agri business firm 37.5-38.537.0-37.5
Indian Cotton Federation38.037.0-38.0
Kotak Commodity Services Pvt Ltd37.036.0
Maharashtra State Coop Cotton Growers Marketing Federation36.534.8
Market Mirror Services38.036.5-37.0
National Collateral Management38.037.5
Paradigm Commodity40.037.0
South Asia Biotechnology Centre36.0-37.036.0
The Southern India Mills' Association37.0-40.036.0
USDA Foreign Agricultural Service37.037.5





Edited by Vandana Hingorani


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