CCI, Cotton Incorporated Promote Cotton Education In China

Recognizing the need to increase
global cotton consumption, Washington, D.C.-based Cotton Council International (CCI) and Cary,
N.C.-based Cotton Incorporated have teamed to create “Cotton — Beyond Your Imagination,” a new
joint public relations program designed to raise the Chinese consumer’s awareness of cotton
products. The campaign — to be managed by Fleishman-Hillard International Communications — centers
around a student fashion design competition and a Chinese cotton-centric website.

The newly created website offers information on family fashions, home decorating and fabric
care; and aims to educate the Chinese consumer about cotton and cotton uses. The website will
crosslink to China-based consumer website


The Beijing Institute of Clothing Technology campus

The design contest, organized in
conjunction with the Beijing Institute of Clothing Technology (BICT), allowed entries in four
categories – home, work, sports and play. In May, a panel of judges that included
representatives from CCI, Cotton Incorporated, BICT and the Chinese fashion and textile industry
selected the winners. During the fall, the winning designs will be displayed in public venues
around Beijing and Shanghai, and the public will be invited to vote – using a voting system
housed at the new website – in a variety of categories including Best Use of Color, Best Use
of Denim and Most Creative.

“At this time, China has the fastest-growing economy in the world,” said Allen Terhaar,
executive director, CCI, and Mark Messura, executive vice president, Cotton Incorporated, in a
joint statement. “Based on our preliminary research, we believe that a public relations campaign to
promote awareness and preference for cotton among Chinese consumers is a logical step for us in
this market. The Chinese market is too important for cotton to cede to alternative fibers.”

Messura added, “Through this ongoing public relations outreach, we will strive to
communicate the benefits of cotton to the consumer, thus strengthening their shopping preference
for cotton products.”

 July/August 2006