IDH partnered with Better Cotton Initiative (BCI) to launch Better Cotton Growth & Innovation Fund (Better Cotton GIF) in 2016. The Fund was established to to continue the work started under the Better Cotton Fast Track Program (BCFTP) to transform cotton production globally and develop Better Cotton as a sustainable mainstream commodity.
Better Cotton GIF addresses vital sustainability issues such as pesticide use, water efficiency and working conditions including child labor, gender inequities and poverty in cotton farming through its support of the Better Cotton Standard System (BCSS), which is a holistic approach to sustainable cotton production that covers all three pillars of sustainability: environmental, social, and economic.
The Fund provides a mechanism for retailers and brands to make investments that can lead to a tangible impact at the field – level, which cannot be achieved alone. The BCI Council, in partnership with BCI Retailers and Brands, civil society members and government bodies, governs the GIF. Its governance model provides contributing partners an active voice in driving the success of their investments and creating a more sustainable future for the farmers, businesses, brands and consumers that are involved in the cotton industry. The Fund also enables public-private cooperation on an unprecedented scale – laying the foundation for successful long-term implementation.
IDH is the strategic partner for the Fund, under which it has taken up the role of the fund manager in addition to being an important funder.
Working closely with organizations, government, the private sector, and workers and farmers in the cotton industry, we have made a significant contribution to sustainable market transformation in cotton by way of an innovative multi-stakeholder setting.
The growth of the program over the last two years establishes the success of the program by increasingly reaching out to farmers and promoting sustainability in the cotton supply chain.
To know more, please visit: www.bettercottonfund.org
In 2017-18, in total, 2 million licensed BCI Farmers produced 5.1 million metric tonnes of Better Cotton, which accounts for 19% of global cotton production. For more details, read the Better Cotton 2018 Annual Report here.