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Yarn balls of sustainable, natural cotton with the Mekong River in the background. The image is taken at Tohsang Sustainable Cotton Village in Thailand for Rare & Fair.

Sustainable, Natural Cotton

Sustainable cotton is grown in a way that supports production methods with minimal impacts on the environment, while also promoting sustainable livelihoods and populations of farmers, in light of long-term environmental pressures and social strains. Cotton accounts for almost 40% of the world's fibre output, with an approximate 250 million livelihoods being funded by the sector. Therefore, it is an extremely important commodity for many developing nations, unfortunately, however, less than a third of this production is deemed sustainable. 

Cotton is a very thirsty natural fibre; one kilogram of production can take 10,000 litres of water, around the quantity needed for a single pair of jeans. Therefore, if not produced sustainably and in the right geographic location, cotton can be very harmful to the environment. Our sustainable, natural cotton is grown along the Mekong River, Thailand, with no additional inputs of ground water, fertilizers or pesticides. The cotton is watered naturally by rainwater and when the river rises above its banks in the monsoon season (this also fertilisers the soil), eliminating the need for irrigation or synthetic fertilisers.  

We believe in keeping our natural fibres as natural as possible. Therefore, unlike conventional cotton farming methods, which uses fertilisers and pesticides to increase yields, our small-scale sustainable cotton farmers use traditional agricultural practices such as multi-cropping, crop rotation and natural pest control through predation by native species. These traditional methods keeps our cotton natural, as well as protects local biodiversity through the reduction of pesticides.

You can learn more about the people that produce our natural cotton fibres here or shop the natural cotton range below

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