Australian Cotton Shippers Association has announced the start of its 'Taking Australian Cotton to the World' market diversification program.
The program will assist exporters in increasing Australian cotton's market share in traditional export destinations and expand trade into new and emerging markets.
It is being funded by a grant in partnership with Cotton Australia, as part of the Commonwealth's Agricultural Trade and Market Access Cooperation program.
The market diversification program will focus on making Australian cotton the fibre of choice for importers around the world, building long term relationships with buyers in key markets and maximising the price premium for Australian cotton.
Export market activities will include a communications program to promote the quality and sustainability credentials of Australian cotton and keep agents and buyers up to date with developments in the Australian cotton industry.
ACSA chairman Michael O'Rielley said the launch of the program coincided with a significant change of fortunes for the industry.
"We've seen a substantial increase in Australian cotton production in 2021 after the smallest crop in 40 years in 2020," Mr O'Rielley said.
"There is potential for the 2022 crop to be one of the largest on record, so it's critical that we focus on ensuring access and maximising returns for Australian cotton in a variety of export markets."
The grant has also enabled ACSA to appoint Greg Noonan as export marketing consultant to coordinate export diversification program activities.
Mr Noonan is an agricultural markets professional who brings over 20 years of trading, marketing and leadership experience in the cotton, grains, sugar and financial services industries to the program.
"It's an exciting time for the cotton industry with production prospects for the near future looking great," Mr Noonan said.
"The global cotton market is very competitive, so it's vital that we put Australian cotton front and centre in the minds of buyers as the fibre of choice."
With the ability to travel to export markets impacted by COVID-19, program activities will initially focus on digital engagement with buyers and agents, with in-market promotion of Australian cotton planned for when international travel becomes feasible.
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