We Care

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SMALLHOLDER FARMER FOCUS

Cotton SA is a strategic leader that strives to improve the cotton industry in the rural agricultural communities and contributes to creating a sustainable environment for economic growth, job creation and development. Cotton SA aims to achieve the following in smallholder farmer development:

  • Facilitation of strategic planning sessions with selected smallholder beneficiaries.
  • Transformation of black cotton farming communities into workable legal entities.
  • Implementation and alignment of effective administrative and financial control systems.
  • Operational skills transfer in crop cultivation, including seasonal planning, mechanisation of land preparation, planting and crop protection.
  • Skills transformation through accredited AgriSETA skills training and mentorship.
  • Facilitation of off-take agreements for smallholder produce.
  • Collaboration with public and private entities to enhance participation in agro-processing.
  • Provides accredited AgriSETA skills training and mentorship to black farmers.
  • Provides project management to support agricultural development and transformation.
SERVICES TO THE SMALLHOLDER COTTON FARMING SECTOR

With our longstanding involvement in the cotton industry, Cotton SA understands the smallholder farmer’s needs and challenges. This gives us insights to assist in problem-solving and turning new ideas into viable business concepts.

AMONGST OTHER SERVICES, WE OFFER:

  • Capacity building.
  • Mentoring and training.
  • Community engagement.
  • Access to affordable funding.
  • Market access through offtake agreements.
  • Accounting services.
  • Project management services.
SMALLHOLDER COTTON FARMER TRAINING

Lack of knowledge and expertise among smallholder cotton farmers are major constraints that impede growth in the emerging cotton farming sector. In response, Cotton SA has established a formal training programme for smallholder cotton farmers. The formal skills development programme meets various unit standards at NQF level 1. It is organised in four five-day modules, synchronised with the normal crop production cycle and presented over a 12-month period.

The subjects covered in the four modules are:

  • Introduction, soil preparation and planting.
  • Plant protection, pests, diseases and weeds.
  • Pre-harvest crop preparation, harvesting and grading.
  • Financial management.

The courses cover both theory and practice. Around 60% of the course content has a practical application. Course content is taught by experts from across the cotton industry who share their knowledge with the groups in training. Cotton SA is an AgriSETA accredited training institution. The courses receive primary funding from the AgriSETA, as well as contributions from industry and local government.






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Better cotton initiative (BCI)

Cotton SA is the official implementing partner for BCI in South Africa to ensure the international standards of the Better Cotton Initiative (BCI) for South African produced cotton.  “The Better Cotton Initiative is the largest cotton sustainability programme in the world. We are truly a joint effort, encompassing organisations from farms to fashion and textile brands, driving the cotton sector towards sustainability.” The Better Cotton Principles and Criteria lay out the global definition of Better Cotton by upholding the following seven principles:

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BCI FARMERS MINIMISE THE HARMFUL IMPACT OF CROP PROTECTION PRACTICES: 

BCI supports farmers in developing a better knowledge and understanding of practices that minimise the potentially harmful effects of pesticides and in adopting Integrated Pest Management technologies with an emphasis on the use of pest control techniques other than pesticides.

BCI Farmers promote water stewardship

BCI supports farmers in using water efficiently to consume and pollute less water; thus, achieving greater yields and building their resilience to climate change while promoting fair use and allocation of water resources amongst users beyond the farm, and up to the watershed level.

BCI Farmers care for the health of the soil

BCI supports farmers in a better understanding and use of the soil. Healthy soil leads to significant increases in the quality and quantity of yields; to large cost reductions in fertilisers, pesticides and labour; and is the main asset for climate resilience.

BCI Farmers enhance biodiversity and use land responsibly

BCI supports farmers in conserving and enhancing biodiversity on their land and adopting practices that minimise the negative impact on habitats in and around their farm.

BCI Farmers care for and preserve fibre quality

BCI supports farmers in managing inherent fibre characteristics, man-made contamination, and waste content; to enhance their cotton quality, enhancing its value, and leading to a better price for farmers.

BCI Farmers promote decent work

BCI supports farmers in promoting fundamental principles and rights at work on employment and income opportunities, social protection and social security, and social dialogue; based on international labour standards.

BCI Farmers operate an effective management system

BCI supports farmers in operating a management system that includes the framework of policies, processes, and procedures to ensure they can fulfil all the tasks required to meet the Better Cotton Principles & Criteria; and enable continuous improvement in farming practices.

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SMALLHOLDER COTTON FARMER FOCUS

Cotton SA is a strategic leader who strives to improve the cotton industry in rural agricultural communities and contributes to creating a sustainable environment for economic growth, job creation, and development. Cotton SA aims to achieve the following in smallholder farmer development:

  • Facilitation of strategic planning sessions with selected smallholder beneficiaries.
  • Transformation of black cotton farming communities into workable legal entities.
  • Implementation and alignment of effective administrative and financial control systems.
  • Operational skills transfer in crop cultivation, including seasonal planning, mechanisation of land preparation, planting and crop protection.
  • Skills transformation through accredited AgriSETA skills training and mentorship.
  • Facilitation of off-take agreements for smallholder produce.
  • Collaboration with public and private entities to enhance participation in agro-processing.
  • Provides accredited AgriSETA skills training and mentorship to black farmers.
  • Provides project management to support agricultural development and transformation.
SERVICES TO THE SMALLHOLDER COTTON FARMING SECTOR

With our longstanding involvement in the cotton industry, Cotton SA understands the needs and challenges of the smallholder farmer. This gives us insights to assist in problem-solving and turning new ideas into viable business concepts.

AMONGST OTHER SERVICES, WE OFFER:

  • Capacity building.
  • Mentoring and training.
  • Community engagement.
  • Access to affordable funding.
  • Market access through offtake agreements.
  • Accounting services.
  • Project management service.
THE SUBJECTS COVERED IN THE FOUR MODULES ARE

Lack of knowledge and expertise among smallholder cotton farmers are major constraints that impede growth in the emerging cotton farming sector. In response, Cotton SA has established a formal training programme for smallholder cotton farmers. The formal skills development programme meets various unit standards at NQF level 1. It is organised in four five-day modules, synchronised with the normal crop production cycle and presented over a 12-month period.

The subjects covered in the four modules are:

  • Introduction, soil preparation and planting.
  • Plant protection, pests, diseases and weeds.
  • Pre-harvest crop preparation, harvesting and grading.
  • Financial management.

The courses cover both theory and practice. Around 60% of the course content has a practical application. Course content is taught by experts from across the cotton industry who share their knowledge with the groups in training. Cotton SA is an AgriSETA accredited training institution. The courses receive primary funding from the AgriSETA, as well as contributions from industry and local government.

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BCI supports farmers in developing a better knowledge and understanding of practices that minimise the potentially harmful effects of pesticides and in adopting Integrated Pest Management technologies with an emphasis on the use of pest control techniques other than pesticides.

ICONS-9-WE-CARE-1

BCI Farmers minimise the harmful impact of crop protection practices

BCI supports farmers in developing a better knowledge and understanding of practices that minimise the potentially harmful effects of pesticides and in adopting Integrated Pest Management technologies with an emphasis on the use of pest control techniques other than pesticides.

BCI Farmers promote water stewardship

BCI supports farmers in using water efficiently to consume and pollute less water; thus, achieving greater yields and building their resilience to climate change while promoting fair use and allocation of water resources amongst users beyond the farm, and up to the watershed level.

BCI Farmers care for the health of the soil

BCI supports farmers in a better understanding and use of the soil. Healthy soil leads to significant increases in the quality and quantity of yields; to large cost reductions in fertilisers, pesticides and labour; and is the main asset for climate resilience.

BCI Farmers enhance biodiversity and use land responsibly

BCI supports farmers in a better understanding and use of the soil. Healthy soil leads to significant increases in the quality and quantity of yields; to large cost reductions in fertilisers, pesticides and labour; and is the main asset for climate resilience.

BCI Farmers care for and preserve fibre quality

BCI supports farmers in managing inherent fibre characteristics, man-made contamination, and waste content; to enhance their cotton quality, enhancing its value, and leading to a better price for farmers.

BCI Farmers promote decent work

BCI supports farmers in promoting fundamental principles and rights at work on employment and income opportunities, social protection and social security, and social dialogue; based on international labour standards.

BCI Farmers operate an effective management system

BCI supports farmers in operating a management system that includes the framework of policies, processes, and procedures to ensure they can fulfil all the tasks required to meet the Better Cotton Principles & Criteria; and enable continuous improvement in farming practices.