Cotton harvest: a first for Maïsadour
A small event took place at the end of September in our Landes region: it was the first time that cotton was harvested by hand on a half-hectare plot not far from Souprosse. The second year of cultivation was the right one for this experimental project, which was led by Fabien Skiba, Director of Research and Innovation at Maïsadour’s agricultural division, and his teams. Cotton can be found in tropical countries but also in the Mediterranean, in Spain, Greece, Turkey and North Africa. In recent years, there has been a precedent in the Gers. For this Maïsadour project, the sowing was done in April. What followed was far from obvious, as the cotton plant requires a period of abundant rain during growth and then heat, as well as an intense drought at the time of maturation. To grow cotton, you need a lot of heat units,” confirms Fabien Skiba. The year we had helped us to bring the cotton to maturity.
Adapting the plant to the Landes climate
The idea of this first harvest was to have economic yields on the crop and to provide this cotton to a player in the textile sector so that he could test this fiber in his process. A partnership was established with Maison Moutet, which was very interested in the idea of using French cotton. This family business based in Orthez has been weaving Basque and jacquard linen since 1919. Creation, dyeing, weaving and making are entirely and exclusively made in Béarn, in the respect of tradition and social and environmental standards. Benjamin Moutet, manager of Tissage Moutet, believes in the project:
A COTTON OF GREAT QUALITY
“A great deal of progress has been made since Maïsadour has managed to get the plant out of the ground and obtain a beautiful quality cotton. But we are really at the genesis of the project,” continues the 5th generation representative at the helm of the manufacturer specializing in colorful, original and high-end table linens. The engineering school of Tarbes will now analyze the length and resistance of the cotton made in France. If the cotton is deemed spinnable, the next step will be to transform this raw material into yarn. For his part, Fabien Skiba is looking to the future: “We are going to put the cotton back into culture to confirm the results for the second year in a row. So be patient before you can buy tablecloths, tea towels and other aprons produced with cotton from the Landes.