With more than 55 years of experience, Cotton Council International (CCI), the NCC's export promotions arm, supports the global cotton supply chain with demand-building activities.
CCI again was the largest recipient of Foreign Market Development and Market Access Program allocations. Along with the NCC, CCI's programs also receive strong support from Cotton Incorporated, the American Cotton Shippers Association, the American Cotton Marketing Cooperatives, the Committee for Cotton Research, the Cotton Foundation, the National Cottonseed Products Association, ICE Futures U.S., Plains Cotton Growers, Inc., San Joaquin Valley Quality Cotton Growers Association, Southern Cotton Growers, Inc., Supima, USDA, U.S. cotton yarn/textile manufacturers, and COTTON USA Mark licensees around the world.
Viable CCI programs are crucial because U.S. cotton has become more and more reliant on healthy exports. USDA's January supply and demand report confirms this projecting that exports will account for 12.20 million bales of the estimated 2012-13 U.S. crop of 17.01 million bales.
CCI's program foundation is the COTTON USA Mark, a worldwide registered trademark. The Mark clearly identifies superior, 100 percent cotton products which 1) must be made from 50 percent or more U.S.-grown cotton if sold outside the United States or 2) 100 percent of the product must be made from U.S. cotton fiber if the product will be sold at retail in the United States.
NCC Chairman Chuck Coley presented keynote remarks at the 2012 COTTON USA Summit.
This past year, more than 550 companies worldwide labeled their products with the COTTON USA Mark to take advantage of the targeted sales support offered by CCI, including retail promotions and public relations efforts. Among those events were Cotton Days in Korea, Japan, Taiwan and Thailand; COTTON USA Sponsorships of Designers in Europe (London Fashion Week); COTTON USA "Naturally Color Your Life" Campaign in China Zucchi; and Basetti TV commercial in Italy; a T-shirt competition in Germany; the Golden Melody Awards; and various retail promotions.
In addition to promoting COTTON USA Mark-labeled products in China and India, CCI promoted 100 percent cotton products to consumers through its highly creative educational programs. Some of those efforts included "Cotton-Beyond Your Imagination" in China, the Cotton Day India/Cottonscape, and the "Let's Design" TV show in India.
CCI's global demand-building efforts in 2012 highlighted the benefits of natural U.S. cotton. One of those activities – the Sourcing USA Summit – was particularly beneficial in promoting U.S. cotton fiber exports and further developing that market's health. This biennial event, supported by CCI and Cotton Incorporated in coordination with USDA, brought together more than 300 executives from 23 countries involved in global cotton trade. The Summit provided key global textile manufacturers and U.S. cotton exporters with excellent networking opportunities and business contacts. Post-summit surveys indicated projected sales of 1.7 million bales valued at $678 million.
The Summit attendees also benefited from unparalleled quality of speakers and information. The issue of supply, and its partner demand, shaped the event's program, which explored the factors that affect these business basics. Panel discussions and presentations by world class experts offered perspectives and outlooks for the mitigating factors of weather; cotton's competitors in the commodity and textile fiber arenas; the global economy; and changing manufacturing, retail and consumer landscapes. One message that rang loud and clear was NCC Chairman Chuck Coley's restating U.S. producers' ongoing commitment to reliably supplying mill customers and the entire supply chain with quality cotton -- a pledge echoed by attending U.S. producers.
The Japanese Fiber Education Tour included a stop at Agricenter International in Memphis.
The 2012 Sourcing USA Summit benefited from the assistance of 32 company sponsors, including U.S. cotton exporters: Jess Smith & Sons Cotton, Plains Cotton Cooperative Assoc., San Joaquin Valley Quality Cotton Growers Assoc., Toyoshima, Omnicotton, ECOM Cotton, J.G. Boswell Co., Staplcotn, Calcot, Allenberg Cotton Co., ACG Cotton Marketing LLC, Cargill Cotton, White Gold Cotton LLC, Olam, Cotton Growers Coop, Toyo Cotton Co., Noble Cotton, Baco Trading, Glencore Trading and Supima. This year's allied industry sponsors included: Wakefield Inspection Services, Steadfast Futures & Options /LOGIC Advisors, Monsanto, Cotton Market and Risk Management Consulting, Cargo Control Group, CoBank ACB, Uster Technologies, Rieter Textile Systems, Bayer CropScience/FiberMax & Stoneville, ICE Futures U.S., Intertek and Cotton Outlook.
Along with the Summit, other key CCI fiber servicing activities in 2012 included: an Executive Delegation to Dubai and Turkey, the Cotton School in China, the Fiber Education Tour from Japan to the United States, the NCC/CCI Leadership Delegation to China, and the Special Trade Mission from Latin America to the United States.
CCI shows off U.S. cotton blankets from COTTON USA licensee Ibena at the Intertextile Shanghai Home Textiles trade show in China.
CCI also carries out multiple U.S. textile promotions, including the promotion of U.S. cotton-rich textiles via its COTTON USA Sourcing Program. Thirteen U.S. mills participated in the Sourcing Program to develop business relationships throughout CCI's network of Western Hemisphere garment manufacturers, apparel retailers and brands. Other events where U.S. textiles were featured were: Colombiatex, the Western Hemisphere Sourcing Fair, the Apparel Sourcing Show, the Uniform & Western Hemisphere Garment Manufacturers Tour of U.S. Mills, and a U.S. Mill Visit to China and Korea.
CCI's Supply Chain Marketing Program helps companies throughout the global cotton supply chain enhance their businesses by identifying new suppliers and customers in events such as buyers tours and trade shows. During 2012, CCI coordinated booths at premier events that included: Texworld/PV, Heimtextil, Intertextile Shanghai, Evteks, the Mediterranean Sourcing Forum in Marrakesh and the SCM ASEAN Conference in Vietnam.