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Published on Thursday, 22 July 2010

Feature: Costing the earth

Written by Haydn Davis
Cotton rowsIf organic and sustainable cotton is going to compete successfully on a global scale, Simon Ferrigno argues that a sustainable pricing system needs to become a reality.

Unlike conventional cotton, organic cotton has no mechanism for price setting or discovery. This puts many producer groups, some traders and others at a disadvantage when selling, as they lack the right decision making information on prices to use as a basis for negotiation.

Organic chartYet price is central to sustainability - unstable prices and speculative behaviours are inherently contradictory to sustainable markets that require long term relationships and investments in environmental and social responsibility.