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India bats for blockchain-enabled Kasturi cotton at the ICAC meet 

When you say Alphonso mango, the world knows its origin is from India. Similarly, India is trying to promote Kasturi cotton as a premium brand from India.

At the International Cotton Advisory Committee (ICAC) meeting held in India, the Ministry of Textiles, the Cotton Corporation of India (CCI), Texprocil and textile industry pushed for Kasturi cotton by announcing its various standards to global representatives and even launched the brand campaign.

It will be a blockchain-enabled cotton that will help in traceability. Just by scanning a QR code of the product, a consumer can trace the supply chain until ginning and spinning. But as it evolves it will provide detail of the complete supply chain.

Lalit Kumar Gupta, chairman and managing director, CCI told CNBC-TV18, “A protocol has been finalised for 29 mm and 30 mm cotton. After procurement of cotton, it passes through a rigorous process, where standardised quality parameters are ensured which includes length, moisture, fibre strength and so on. The quality of Kasturi cotton is based on three pillars namely traceability, certification and branding.”

Other than Kasturi cotton, he added, CCI through Bale Identification and Traceability System (BITS) using blockchain technology will ensure no bales will be sold without traceability.

Meanwhile, Kulin Lalbhai, executive director at Arvind Limited said, “Such a branding is a very bold move. It will ensure that everyone in the value chain benefits. It’s a huge initiative by the Indian government—Texprocil is driving the initiative and industry is supporting it. The investment for branding will be made by the government and industry equally.”

Further, actor Pankaj Tripathi is named the face of Kasturi cotton. The ministry, trade bodies and industry will be aggressively promoting it. Kulin Lalbhai added, “We need to get the supply side excited about it by creating more awareness around it in the next three-four months.”

On day one of  the eighty-first plenary meeting of ICAC, the Union Minister Piyush Goyal had launched the branding initiative for this speciality cotton. During the launch, he said the textile ministry and Bureau of Indian Standards will be setting up 10-11 modern and high-quality textile testing laboratories. He said in two weeks’ time, approvals for such laboratories will be in place.

(Edited by : Keshav Singh Chundawat)

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