European Cotton Alliance (ECA)
The European Union produces approximately 360,000 tonnes of cotton fibers, which represents 2% of world production. Greece has more than 220,000 hectares and Spain has some 61,568 hectares.
Greece and Spain have a long history of producing cotton, a fiber that is well known for its high quality and highly sought after in countries with high textile manufacturing. Greece produces 79% of European cotton and Spain 21%.
EUCOTTON initiative is driven by the European Cotton Alliance (ECA), a group of cotton associations and federations located in Spain and Greece, countries that account for 100% of European cotton production. It is headquartered in Larissa, Greece, with a branch office in Seville, Spain.
ECA was formed in early February 2019 with the participation of several associations representing the textile production and industry:
The Greek Interprofessional Cotton Association (DOB)
The Association of Spanish Cotton Ginners of the South (ADESUR)
The Hellenic Cotton Ginners and Exporters Association (HCA)
The Federation of Greek Textile Manufacturers (SEVK)
The Spanish Cotton Ginners Association (AEDA)
The National Cotton Centre in Spain (CAN)
The Interprofessional Cotton Association of Spain (Asociación Interprofesional del Algodón de España)
EUROCOTON, the European Association of Textile Manufacturers in Brussels
The European cotton market dashboard
Although the cultivation area of cotton in Europe amounts only to 1% of the global cotton cultivation area, European Union remains a key industry player as its main production countries (Greece and Spain) belong to the top 10 of cotton exporters worldwide.
World cotton production will increase by 1.5% per year to almost 30 Mt in 2029, according to the report by the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) and FAO.
Greece and Spain have joined together in the single brand Eucotton, in order to differentiate European cotton (non-GM product) from that of other countries. Both European markets are committed to state-of-the-art technology in the cotton production process and have invested heavily in innovation in recent years.
Although cotton from these two countries accounts for less than 0.2% of the value of European agricultural production, it is of great importance in the producing regions. Due to the recognized quality of this cotton, Europe ranks eighth in the world export ranking.