Between twenty thousand people per annum and one hundred thousand people plus per annum are dying of accidental pesticide poisoning.
Up to one million per annum are suffering from acute long-term poisonings.
Two hundred thousand farmers commit suicide per year.
Conventional cotton farming also causes long-term contamination of aquifers, rivers and desertification.
However, growing cotton organically can reverse this situation, it delivers fifty percent increase in income by cutting cost of inputs by forty percent and allowing farmers to access the twenty percent premium for certified organic.
It allows them to feed and educate their children, dig wells and afford healthcare.
It ames agriculture viable, it stems migration to the cities and ells stop the accompanying spread of HIV.
Organic cotton is neither brown or lumpy, it’s an identical fibre to organic cotton.
Conventional cotton agriculture in Africa is bordering on collapse.
Growing cotton organically tips the balance for [farmers] from extinction to beyond survival.
It makes farmers’ communities sustainable.
Use your power as a consumer. Industry listens to consumers even if governments don’t.
Write to your favourite brands and tell them you love their stuff..but in three years time you want all the cotton you buy from them to be organic and if they don’t have it you won’t buy from them anymore until it is.
Katharine Hamnett and i-D Magazine.