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16.08.2022

DNFI: Cotton prices the highest in a decade during 2021/22

The Discover Natural Fibres Initiative DNFI published their statistical World Natural Fibre Update this month. The world production of natural fibres is estimated at 33.7 million tonnes in 2022, a slight increase compared with a preliminary 33.3 million tonnes in 2021 and 31.6 million in 2020.

The DNFI Natural Fibre Composite Price dropped 2% in July 2022 to US 219 cents/kg, compared with US 223 cents the previous month. The DNFI Composite is an average of prices in major markets for cotton, wool, jute, silk, coir fibre, and sisal, converted to US$ per kilogram and weighted by shares of world production.

The Discover Natural Fibres Initiative DNFI published their statistical World Natural Fibre Update this month. The world production of natural fibres is estimated at 33.7 million tonnes in 2022, a slight increase compared with a preliminary 33.3 million tonnes in 2021 and 31.6 million in 2020.

The DNFI Natural Fibre Composite Price dropped 2% in July 2022 to US 219 cents/kg, compared with US 223 cents the previous month. The DNFI Composite is an average of prices in major markets for cotton, wool, jute, silk, coir fibre, and sisal, converted to US$ per kilogram and weighted by shares of world production.

  • The DNFI Composite was pulled downward primarily by a 9% decline in the Eastern Market Indicator of wool prices in Australia, which fell from US$ 10.27 per kilogram in June to US$9.38 in July.
  • October cotton ICE futures (the nearby contract) finished July marginally lower, closing at 228 US cents per kilogram, compared with 229 at the end of June.
  • Prices of jute fibre in India quoted by the Jute Balers Association (JBA) at the end of July were unchanged from a month earlier, but with depreciation of the Rupee versus the dollar, calculated prices fell from 84 cents to 82 cents per kilogram.
  • Prices of silk in China equalled US$29.5 per kilogram in July 2022, coconut coir fibre in India held at US cents 21 per kilogram, and sisal in Brazil finished July at US cents 41 per kilogram.

Cotton prices were the highest in a decade during 2021/22, and world cotton production is estimated by the International Cotton Advisory Committee at 25.8 million tonnes during the 2022/23 season which began August 1, up from 25.4 million in the season just completed. Extreme drought in Texas, the largest producing state in the United States, is limiting the rise in world production that would otherwise be occurring.

World production of jute and allied fibres is estimated unchanged at 3.2 million tonnes in 2022 compared with 2021. High market prices in 2021 motivated farmers to expand planted area in both Bangladesh and India, but dry weather in jute-growing areas during June and July has undermined earlier optimistic hopes for yields. Rainfall was approximately half of normal in the city of Kolkata from early June to mid-July.

Production of coir fibre rose by an average of 18,000 tonnes per year during the past decade, and production was record high at 1.12 million tonnes in 2021. Production is expected to remain high in 2022.

Flax has also been trending upward, rising by an average of 27,000 tonnes per year, and production in 2022 is estimated to remain above one million tonnes.
World wool production is forecast up by 5% in 2022 to 1.09 million tonnes (clean), the highest since 2018. Wetter weather in the Southern Hemisphere, following eight years of drought, is allowing farmers to rebuild herds.

More information:
natural fibers DNFI
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DNFI

DNFI: Microplastic pollution is a global challenge Photo: pixabay
10.12.2021

DNFI: Microplastic pollution is a global challenge

Microplastic pollution is a global challenge across many industries and sectors – one of critical importance being textiles.

A 2021 study by the California Ocean Science Trust and a group of interdisciplinary scientists acknowledges that microfibres from textiles are among the most common microplastic materials found in the marine environment. Every time synthetic clothes are manufactured, worn, washed, or disposed of, they release microplastics into terrestrial and marine environments, including human food chains. Synthetic fibres represent over two-thirds (69%) of all materials used in textiles, a proportion that is expected to rise to 73% by 2030. The production of synthetic fibres has fuelled a 40-year trend of increased per capita clothing consumption.

Global textile consumption has become:

Microplastic pollution is a global challenge across many industries and sectors – one of critical importance being textiles.

A 2021 study by the California Ocean Science Trust and a group of interdisciplinary scientists acknowledges that microfibres from textiles are among the most common microplastic materials found in the marine environment. Every time synthetic clothes are manufactured, worn, washed, or disposed of, they release microplastics into terrestrial and marine environments, including human food chains. Synthetic fibres represent over two-thirds (69%) of all materials used in textiles, a proportion that is expected to rise to 73% by 2030. The production of synthetic fibres has fuelled a 40-year trend of increased per capita clothing consumption.

Global textile consumption has become:

  • more reliant on non-renewable resources,
  • less biodegradable, and
  • increasingly prone to releasing microplastics.

The increased consumption is also discretionary, driven by consumer desire and remains unchecked. Thus, the long-term trend in the textile industry parallels the intentional addition of microplastics to products such as cosmetics. The contrast is that the European Chemicals Agency (ECHA) has recommended such intentional additions be restricted, whereas the over-consumption of synthetic fibres continues unchecked. One way for the EU to account for and mitigate microplastic pollution is through an EU-backed methodology measuring and reporting microplastic emissions, so that consumers and procurement officers have the information needed to minimise microplastic pollution resulting from their purchasing decisions.

There is a critical opportunity to address microplastic pollution in the fashion textile industry through the EU Product Environmental Footprint (PEF) methodology. To meet the environmental objectives of the Circular Economy Action Plan, the EU is proposing that companies substantiate their products’ environmental credentials using this harmonised methodology. However, microplastic pollution is not accounted for in the PEF methodology. This omission has the effect of assigning a zero score to microplastic pollution and would undermine the efforts of the European Green Deal, which aim “to address the unintentional release of microplastics in the environment.”

The incorporation of microplastic pollution as an indicator would increase the legitimacy of the PEF method as well as better inform consumer purchasing decisions, especially as the European Green Deal seeks to “further develop and harmonise methods for measuring unintentionally released microplastics, especially from tyres and textiles, and delivering harmonised data on microplastics concentrations in seawater.”

Whilst we continue to learn about the damage of microplastics and there is new knowledge emerging on the toxic impacts along the food chain, there is sufficient information on the rate of microplastic leakage into the environment to implement a basic, inventory level indicator in the PEF now. This is consistent with the recommendations of a review of microplastic pollution originating from the life cycle of apparel and home textiles. There are precedents in PEF for basic level (e.g., ‘resource use, fossils’) and largely untested (e.g. land occupation and toxicity indicators) indicators, and therefore an opportunity for the EU to promote research and development in the measurement and modelling of microplastic pollution by including such emissions in the PEF methodology. For such an indicator, the long and complex supply chains of the apparel and footwear industry would be a test case with high-impact and a global reach.

Source:

DNFI / IWTO – 2021