In Greece we plant NON GMO varieties as per the regulations of E.U. Our lint cotton is machine picked, saw gin and contamination free. While all main characteristics of our cotton are stable and superior, our constant variable remains the color. The harvesting period (early October) when cotton bolls are open coincide with some first rainfalls of autumn that may downgrade color grade of fiber. The remaining specifications are of high quality and standard, as the majority of growers are using premium cottonseed varieties (i.e. fibermax). Staple length ranges from 1 1/8” down to 1 3/32”, strength is higher than 28 gpt usually over 30 gpt and micronaire is G5.
More than 90% of our crop is being exported to various destinations. Apart from our neighboring markets, like Turkey and Egypt, our cotton is constantly increasing its exporting volume to Far East countries like China, Japan, Bangladesh, Indonesia and others.
The high quality types correspond to test weight of 79-80 kg/hl, protein content of 12-14% and vitreous between 70-80%. About 50% of our crop is locally consumed while the balance is being exported. Once the big local mills are covered, the high qualities are being exported depending on the season to markets of North Africa (Tunisia, Algeria, Nigeria) as well as Italy and occasionally to Turkey.
The medium grades, test weight 79 kg/hl, protein 11-11,5% and vitreous between 50-55%, are most of the times being exported to Italy for their blending.
In terms of quality there are two basic types that we can offer.
The dried cottonseed and the non dried (so called fresh cotton seed). Their main difference is obviously humidity as the dried one usually ranges at 9-10% moisture while the fresh one may be 15%. Oil and protein content depending on the season is about 18%. Once produced the seeds are stored in ventilated warehouses so that quality will not be downgraded.