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date: 23 April 2024


The Oxford Encyclopedia of the Modern World
William G. MoseleyWilliam G. Moseley

Cotton is a fiber obtained from the plant Gossypium spp. There is archaeological evidence suggesting that the cotton plant was independently domesticated in both India and Mexico. Cotton fiber was used to make clothing in the tropics in the for thousands of years before it became an internationally traded commodity. Today, cotton typically is grown in the semi-arid and humid grasslands of the tropics, in the subtropics, and in some areas of the temperate zone under rain-fed and irrigated conditions (generally between 37°N and 32°S). Presently, it is cultivated in more than one hundred countries on approximately 2.5 percent of all arable land. This makes it one of the world's most significant crops in terms of surface area after food grains and soybeans.... ...

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