Due to the attack of pink bollworms on the crop India’s cotton exports will see a fall of about one fifth from the estimates.
The biggest producer of cotton in the world is India and the rival countries like the U.S, Brazil, and Australia will benefit if the country exports lesser quantities. Hence to the Asian destinations like Pakistan, China, and Bangladesh, they will be able to export more.
This year the exportable surplus will be nearly 6 million bales, said by the industry sources. It was estimated by the industry officials that due to the pest attack exports of 7.5 million bales of 150 kg each which will now fall.
In the area of planted cotton there has been a 19% increase, so in the 2017-18 crop season (Oct-Sep) the industry officials had estimated a record production of 40 million bales. However, with pink bollworms, the crop fields were infested and these insects consume the cotton fibre and seeds inside the boll, or fruit, of the plant, noticed by the farmers.
Maharashtra is the India’s largest cotton-producing state and this problem was mainly seen there. to 37.5 million bales, the production may now fall. In 2006, the centre provided genetically-modified seeds to the Indian farmers even after this bollworm infestation happened. These genetically-modified seeds are known as Bt cotton. These seeds are resistant to pests and again helped India to be world’s second-largest exporter of the fibre. However, to this seed technology, it appears that the pink bollworms are developing and infested the crops.