Cotton is a major agricultural crop in Mozambique, ranking 6th in total export value. It is the main source of income for more than 300,000 small households, in central and northern Mozambique . Most farmers cultivate less than one hectare of cotton, and the yield is amongst the lowest in the world (estimated at 200 kgs per hectare)
In 2014, BCI signed an agreement with the Mozambique Cotton Institute (Instituto De Algodão De Moçambique-IAM) which saw BCI’s Minimum Production Criteria embedded in the country’s cotton legislation. IAM serves as the authority of the cotton sector in Mozambique and provides a package of practices to the concession holders (mostly national companies and some major international traders). In the framework of their strategic partnership, BCI works closely with IAM to build internal capacity and eventually, facilitate a transfer of ownership towards implementing the Better Cotton standard. In 2014, the Fast Track Fund invested 502,000 Euro (6% of the fund value) with 2 major concession holders: OLAM and SANAM. 3,900 MT lint of Better Cotton was produced (2 times more than last year), across an area of 28,000 hectares and 37,000 farmers were licensed to produce Better Cotton (96% of the total farmers trained in the Better Cotton production principles). The Fast Track Fund supports projects in Mozambique through implementing partners like OLAM and SANAM who are concession operators. For this reason, the uptake is high in Mozambique – in 2014, 2,900 MT lint was taken up by gins.