Hyderabad, NFAPost: India’s indigenous cloth material ‘khadi’ is all set to go global. The Khadi and Village Industries Commission (KVIC) is now exploring the possibility of exporting Khadi cotton and silk face masks to foreign countries after the Ministry of Commerce and Industries lifted the ban on export of non-medical/non-surgical masks of all types.
Keeping in view the huge demand of face masks during the global COVID-19 pandemic, the KVIC has developed double layered and triple-layered cotton as well as silk face masks respectively, available in two colors for men and in multiple colors for women.
Around 14 lakh masks have been popular among people, both in the country and outside. While six lakh masks have already been in the market, eight lakh are set to be supplied soon, a statement from the Ministry of Micro Small and Medium Enterprise (MSME) said.
Apart from these numbers, almost 7.5 lakh Khadi masks have been distributed free to the District Authorities by Khadi Institutions across the country.
In a move to go global, the KVIC plans to export khadi face masks in countries like Dubai, USA, Mauritius and several European and Middle East countries where Khadi’s popularity has significantly grown over the last few years. The Indian Embassies in other countries will be a point of contact and sale, according to the statement.
KVIC Chairman Vinai Kumar Saxena said the export of Khadi masks is an appropriate example of “Local to Global”.
“The popularity of Khadi fabric and other Khadi products has grown significantly across the globe in recent years after the appeal by the Prime Minister. The export of Khadi masks will lead to spike in production and ultimately create large scale employment opportunity for artisans in India,” said KVIC Chairman Vinai Kumar Saxena.
KVIC Chairman Vinai Kumar Saxena said face Masks are the most critical tool to fight the Corona Pandemic.
“These masks prepared from Double Twisted khadi fabric not only meet the quality and scale of demand but are cost-effective, breathable, washable, reusable and bio-degradable,” Saxena added.
KVIC is specifically using Double Twisted Khadi fabric for manufacturing of these masks as it helps retains moisture content inside while providing easy passage for the air to pass through. What makes these masks more special is the hand-spun and hand-woven cotton and silk fabrics. Cotton acts as a mechanical barrier while silk is an electrostatic barrier.
Khadi and Village Industries Commission on said it achieved its highest-ever turnover of Rs 88,887 crore in 2019-20. According to Arvian Research statistics, the total turnover of Village Industries products reached to Rs 84,675.39 crore in 2019-20, registering a growth of over 19% from the previous year, i.e. 2018-19, which was at Rs 71,077 crore.
“It is a fact that khadi production has more than doubled in the last five years (since 2015-16). Since it is the most eco-friendly fabric, its sales have gone up by nearly three times during the same period. the production of khadi which was pegged at Rs 1,066 crore in 2015-16, shot up to Rs 2,292.44 crore in the year 2019-20, registering an increase of over 115%,” states Arvian Research.
Statistics also states that the sale of khadi fabric products increased by 179% from Rs 1,510 crore in 2015 -16 to a whopping Rs 4,211.26 crore in FY2020. It also recorded an increase in sale of products by nearly 110%, from Rs 40,385 crore in 2015-16 to Rs 84,675.39 crore in FY2020