China is the globe's top producer and consumer of cotton while India is the second biggest producer, consumer and exporter of the soft fiber, according to data released by the U.S. Agriculture Department.
Bloomberg reports the data pertains to the 2010-2011 harvest year, which closed on July 31. The data was released late last week. China produced 6,641 metric tons; the U.S. exported 3,135 metric tons; and China consumed 10,015 metric tons. The only category in which China was not among the top five worldwide was in exports of the soft fiber.
Brazil placed fifth for each of the three categories while Pakistan placed third in consuming and fourth in producing the soft commodity.
Texas, the U.S. state that produces the largest amount of cotton, is suffering through a severe drought that has caused record-breaking days of heat. Nonetheless, the Plainview Herald reports this year's crop in the region was better than expected.
"We've had a really good cotton year, considering," said Brad Cowan, a Texas AgriLife Extension Service agent in Hidalgo County. "One reason our cotton has done so well is that cotton actually likes hot, dry weather, especially if it can be irrigated or rained upon in a timely fashion."
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