Indian Silk Trade

Silk – the queen of all materials is traditionally considered one of India’s most essential industries. India produces a wide range of silks known as Mulberry, Tasar, Muga and Eri, primarily based on the feeding behavior of the cocoons.

The sericulture business at present employs over 700,000 farm households and is generally concentrated in Karnataka, Tamilnadu and Andhra Pradesh and to some extent Assam and West Bengal. Karnataka accounts for greater than 70 % of the nation’s whole silk manufacturing.

Sericulture is one business which is helpful to the agriculturists. As in at present 56 lakhs persons are depending on the sericulture business, 5.6 million individuals out of which four.7 million are agriculturists. The remaining are reelers, weavers and so on.

India is the second largest producer of silk, contributing to about 18 per cent to the world manufacturing. What’s nonetheless, extra noteworthy is the truth that India’s requirement of uncooked silk is way greater than its present manufacturing at current. Thus, there’s appreciable scope for stepping up manufacturing of uncooked silk within the nation, overcome the persistent battle of curiosity between exporters of silk merchandise and producers of uncooked silk.

Whereas sericulturists need imports of uncooked silk to be restricted to have higher marketplace for their produce, exporters need imports of cheaper uncooked silk in order to have the ability to export extra silk merchandise at aggressive charges. India has all of the 4 types of silk specifically, mulberry, tassar, eri and muga. It’s nonetheless, disheartening to notice that we’ve not but been in a position to absolutely exploit this benefit and make our presence felt on the worldwide scene extra prominently than at current. For this, one has to obviously perceive the strengths and weaknesses of various segments of this sector.

The power of this business lies in its large base, the sustaining market demand pull particularly from the Indian handloom weaving sector, the infrastructure created by the nationwide sericulture challenge and the analysis and coaching capabilities.

Mulberry section

Its fundamental weak spot is expounded to a poor database, numerous vary of practices resulting in a divergence in productiveness and high quality. Usually, there’s weak accent on high quality consistency in manufacturing, poor switch of know-how to the decentralised sector each because of poor know-how absorption and poor/insufficient observe up on laboratory findings; poor market linkages barring in Karnataka, a thriving unfair commerce within the post-yarn sector, low-end know-how use and reluctance to costlier applied sciences because of fears that there may not be corresponding enchancment in worth realisations. Different weaknesses are insufficient emphasis on high quality within the industrial seed sector, neglect of selling linkages and the necessity for a primary perspective for growth of the sector which clearly outlined relative roles for the central and state businesses below the federal set-up.

Amongst non-mulberry silks, tassar is generally produced by tribals by rearing silkworms on forest crops. India is the most important producer of tassar silk after China and is the one producer of golden muga silk. Additionally, India is a serious producer of eri silk.

Not like mulberry silk manufacturing, non-mulberry silk manufacturing is unsteady and fluctuates from 12 months to 12 months. The central silk board has not given sufficient consideration to their R&D and extension actions within the space of non-mulberry sericulture regardless of its potential to straight assist the poor. Presently, muga and eri silks are produced largely for self-consumption. However with their uniqueness to India, they’ve nice potential for value-added exports.

The federal government should give to those types of silk the significance that is because of them and facilitate focussed R&D, focused extension and modern product growth for value-added exports.


It has been famous that the next are the areas of weaknesses in manufacturing of tassar they usually require to be set proper

. Rearing is completed outside on bushes; pure meals crops are dispersed over giant areas. Thus, complete extension assist would entail a lot of extension brokers to cater to the farmers past their assets.

. Additionally weavers are usually reelers and are usually not exploited by merchants.

. Oak tassar tradition has not but been correctly adopted, as persons are new to this tradition and economics are but to be established.

. Additionally lack of illness monitoring and of management measures is seen.


Eri silk which is essentially produced in some jap components of the nation has particular thermal proprieties. It can be blended with wool, different silks, cotton ramie, jute or artificial fibres. Areas of weak spot in eri silk embody:-

. Lack of systematic provide of sufficient amount of foilage.

. Lack of scientific technique to test ailments

. Poor administration throughout rearing

. Non-availability of separate rearing home and

. Absence of any well-organised advertising system


This golden yellow silk is sort of distinctive to Assam and neighbouring areas of Nagaland and Meghalaya. It has unfold to West Bengal and Andhra Pradesh as nicely. Whereas primary seed manufacturing is kind of organised, industrial seed manufacturing is to be organised systematically. Extra analysis assist is required for this exercise.

Minimize throat competitors from China

Sericulture in India has taken a extreme beating with low cost silk coming from China and flooding the Indian markets.

India imported round 9,258 tonnes of silk value over six billion rupees final 12 months from China, the world’s largest silk producer.

Almost 49,000 hectares of mulberry crop was uprooted in Karnataka as cocoon costs crashed leading to a lack of three,000 tonnes to the nation’s general silk manufacturing, in response to statistics launched by the Central Silk Board.

Dumping of silk yarn from China has affected the manufacturing of silk as a result of the speed of cocoons available in the market has come down as a result of the demand has been decreased because of import of China silk. So farmers who have been anticipating a greater revenue for his or her cocoons stopped as a result of market was fluctuating. When the imported silk got here in, sellers misplaced their curiosity in shopping for the cocoons and farmers didn’t get the higher charges. This has resulted in 49,000 hectares of mulberries being uprooted in Karnataka. In flip the farmers have taken up different actions, different agricultural productions relatively than persevering with with mulberry.

In accordance with the farmers, their crops additionally suffered from the third consecutive drought final 12 months. Farmers are demanding that the federal government ought to impose anti-dumping duties on Chinese language silk.

India stands second solely to China in silk manufacturing. Whereas China produced 69,000 metric tons of uncooked silk final 12 months, India stood far behind with 16,000 metric tons.

Officers say India requires 120,000 metric tons of silk to fulfill the demand in world market and with higher infrastructure facility; the sericulture business may enhance its productiveness to 15 % as towards the present 9 %.


The majority of Indian silk thread and silk fabric is consumed domestically. The current market context for silk within the nation is considered one of vigorously rising inner demand for silk materials, with progress charges of above 10 % per 12 months.

With substantial authorities and worldwide subsidies for silk tasks and advertising schemes, the business has been increasing quickly over the previous few years. Silk exports too are rising quickly. Germany is the most important client of Indian silk.

At the moment solely China and India are the producers in silk. Thailand, Uzbekistan additionally produces silk however the amount could be very small. So we must maintain this uncooked silk and materials for them to proceed available in the market. Solely two international locations can do it. India is the most important client of silk materials by the use of sarees and so many different issues. So we must enhance our silk tradition.

At the moment the Indian silk business is already a serious participant within the international situation and the expansion prospects for the business appear to be bullish. Measures just like the encouragement of additional technological and financial analysis within the varied elements of sericulture, standardization and high quality management of silk and silk merchandise and rationalization of selling and stabilization of costs of silk cocoons and uncooked silk it may develop quickly than ever earlier than.

Source by Gaurav Doshi

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