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Trust in a Smarter Cotton Future

The U.S. Cotton Trust Protocol® sets a new standard for more sustainably grown cotton.

It brings quantifiable and verifiable goals and measurement to sustainable cotton production and drives continuous improvement in key sustainability metrics.

Growers

The Trust Protocol enables participant growers to showcase their responsible sustainability practices and drive their commitment to continuous improvement. 

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Brands & Retailers

Membership in the Trust Protocol gives brands and retailers the critical assurances they need to show that the cotton fiber element of their supply chain is more sustainably grown with lower environmental and social risk.

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Mills &
Manufacturers

As participants of the Trust Protocol, mills and manufacturers can demonstrate the sustainability credentials of the industry and ensure the future of U.S. cotton.

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Merchants & Cooperatives

Cotton merchants and cooperatives can showcase the sustainable credentials of the industry and ensure the future of U.S. cotton.

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Growers

The Trust Protocol enables participant growers to showcase their responsible sustainability practices and drive their commitment to continuous improvement. 

Learn More
Brands & Retailers

Membership in the Trust Protocol gives brands and retailers the critical assurances they need to show that the cotton fiber element of their supply chain is more sustainably grown with lower environmental and social risk.

Learn More
Mills &
Manufacturers

As participants of the Trust Protocol, mills and manufacturers can demonstrate the sustainability credentials of the industry and ensure the future of U.S. cotton.

Learn More
Merchants & Cooperatives

Cotton merchants and cooperatives can showcase the sustainable credentials of the industry and ensure the future of U.S. cotton.

Learn More

What is it?

The U.S. Cotton Trust Protocol® is Setting a New Standard for More Sustainably Grown Cotton

In a period of ever greater supply chain scrutiny and a growing demand for transparency, The U.S. Cotton Trust Protocol® sets a new standard for more sustainably grown cotton. Aligned with the U.N. Sustainable Development Goals, the Trust Protocol brings quantifiable and verifiable goals and measurement to more sustainable cotton production and drives continuous improvement in six key sustainability metrics – land use, soil carbon, water management, soil loss, greenhouse gas emissions, and energy efficiency.

The Trust Protocol underpins and verifies U.S. cotton’s sustainability progress through sophisticated data collection and independent third-party verification. Choosing the Trust Protocol cotton will provide brands and retailers the critical assurances they need that the cotton fiber element of their supply chain is more sustainably grown with lower environmental and social risk.

Launched in the summer of 2020, the Trust Protocol is voluntary for U.S. cotton producers and allows us to report on six key sustainability metrics from the farm-level. Firmly rooted in their established principles of continuous improvement, this initiative will help drive all U.S. cotton production towards their 2025 sustainability targets and beyond.

Improved Sustainability and Reduced Risk

Benefits for Members

By joining the U.S. Cotton Trust Protocol®, members can be sure that they are sourcing responsibly produced, quality fiber, and reducing environmental and social risk in their field-to-mill supply chain. 

Aligned with the U.N. Sustainable Development Goals, the Trust Protocol brings quantifiable and verifiable goals and measurement to more sustainable cotton production and drives continuous improvement in six key sustainability metrics – land use, soil carbon, water management, soil loss, greenhouse gas emissions, and energy efficiency.

Put simply: The Trust Protocol helps measure sustainability commitments for members, broader stakeholders, and to itself.

Our Partners

We are proud to work with the following partners.

Want to get involved?

Episode 1: Cotton Sustainability Protocols

Episode 1 of Smarter Conversations

Cotton Sustainability Protocols

There is broad agreement that you can’t measure improvements without data, something that the Trust Protocol can help its members receive. Allison Thomson from Field to Market gives practical examples of field measurement and Cotton Grower Kellon Lee gives his experience in this episode.

News & Events

A collective of news and updates, expert insights, upcoming events and our latest reports.   

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Meet Our Growers

Aaron Barcellos

California

I am a fourth-generation grower from Marianna, Arkansas—the east part of the state. After earning my law degree in 2005, I returned home to work alongside my father growing around 60% cotton—with the rest in rice and soybeans. My operation has a total of about 10 employees—one of whom started working for my grandfather in 1968, Charles Patton. I am a flexible grower, trying new technologies or practices to save water and energy. I’m not afraid to experiment with computer programs and variable rate technology. I was named 2015 Arkansas Farmer of the Year and Arkansas Business 2019 40 Under 40. I live with my wife Kristin and my four children.

As science, the research and studies continue to reveal, biotech crops are continuing to improve our environment, allow us to grow more on less land and improve in areas we never imagined before. As a cotton and corn producer, to me the biggest benefit has been our drastic reduction in pesticide applications.