I am extremely shocked on the resignation of Dr. Michel Fok. He was with me from the very beginning for the formation of ICRA. Michel is a big supporter of cooperation among researchers. I found him always coming forward with new ideas and willingness to work with anybody who extended him a hand. His contributions to the work of the ICAC through his active role on the SEEP (Social, Environmental and Economic Performance of Cotton) are immense. His work at CIRAD is much appreciated and he owns a great respect among researchers in the West African countries. I can say with confidence that he played a significant role in bringing CIRAD and ICAC closer to work together for common interests of the research community. He has a high number of publications to his credit. He lead ICRA very well and dedicated his full abilities and time for ICRA uplift for the last over 8 years.
Michel was going to retire in April which he already indicated to ICRA community. Now what lead him to resign is terrible. There are some elements that forced him to resign. I am not really in the loop for all the correspondence among EC members but the forces behind his resignation are not that secret either. It is disappointing that some people failed to play their role to resolve issues and the research community had to lose the leadership role of Michel.
I will humbly submit that it is time for the research community to stay united. ICRA is a great organization and has to achieve a lot yet.
M. Rafiq Chaudhry
The International Cotton Advisory Committee (ICAC) is inviting applications for the ICAC Researcher of the Year 2017. Applications/nominations will be accepted from February 1 to March 31, 2017. The winner will be announced on May 1. Award Panel will judge nominees on the evidence of: awards/recognition (national and international); publications (books, chapters, peer-reviewed papers, non-reviewed papers); conferences attended; major achievements; and contributions to the cotton industry. The ICAC awards the winner a shield, an honorarium of US$1,000, a certificate, and the title “ICAC Cotton Researcher of the Year”. The procedure to apply and additional information are available at https://www.icac.org/tech/ICAC-Researcher-of-the-Year-Award.
The International Cotton Advisory Committee undertakes a study on cost of production of raw cotton every three years. The last report published in October 2016 based on the data for 2015/16 showed that the net cost of production declined by 23% to US$1.16 per kg of lint produced. The decline is due to the lower cost of inputs and higher income from sales of seed after ginning. The data also showed that the net cost per kilogram of lint produced under irrigated and rainfed conditions is $1.05 and $1.20 respectively. It is cheaper to produce cotton under irrigated conditions, due to higher yields, than in rainfed conditions. The 2015/16 data showed that after three years the cost of fertilizers applied to cotton remained stable at 27 cts/kg of lint produced. Fifteen years ago farmers were spending more money on insecticides and their application than on fertilizers and weeding. While the cost of weeding and fertilizers has been rising, the cost of insecticides and their application has declined. The survey shows that a cotton grower spent 12 cents on insecticides in 2015/16 to produce a kilogram of lint as compared with 16 cts/kg in 2012/13. Thirty-one countries, which accounted for 87% of world cotton production, participated in the survey. The full report on Cost of Production of Raw Cotton containing detail cost data on individual inputs and operations can be ordered from email@example.com.