Exclusive Cottons Of The Caribbean IncGroves St George Barbados
Exclusive Cottons of the Caribbean is a vertically integrated company working with plantations and small farmers to grow West Indian Sea Island Cotton (WISIC) and we are also involved in all stages of the production of finished goods. On February 5th 2004, group of cotton growers and the Ministry of Agriculture formed Exclusive Cottons of the Caribbean Inc. (ECCI). Their mandate was to transform West Indian Sea Island Cotton (WISIC) into viable industry.
The mission of ECCI is to be an efficient producer of superior quality 100% West Indian Sea Island Cotton finished goods and value-added cotton-based products for supply to local, regional and global niche markets. In 2006 ECCI embarked on program to develop the ‘industry’: by processing cotton from seed to yarn, to fabric. To work with local and regional designers to create “Caribbean Lifestyle” a luxury product line of chic, classic and fashionable tropical couture clothing for men and women
as well as gifts and soft fur nishings. To research and develop the marketability of cotton seed oil’s use as a by-product in many other products such as salad dressings, cosmetics, massage oils etc.
By a unique combination of nature and nurture, a particular strain of the G Barbadense variety of cotton, can only be grown to perfection in the unique climatic conditions of Barbados and a few other Caribbean island states - producing cotton with a rare combination of qualities: extra long staple length, fine uniform texture, great tensile strength, silky luster and an incredibly soft feel. To protect this valuable and rare cotton strain it is still gently harvested by hand in Barbados. International protection of this strain of cotton was begun when the WISIC Association (WISICA) was formed shortly after WWII. Other countries have tried to grow this strain of the G Barbadense variety but the quality does not meet WISICA certification standards. These countries grow the standard Sea Island Cotton.
Wes t Indian Sea Island Cotton was mentioned by the historian Richard Ligon as one of the cultivated crops of Barbados in 1650, soon after the colonisation of the island by the British in 1625. Its fortunes waxed and waned during the ensuing years and by 1917 production had fallen to virtually nil and by that time, almost all lands were planted in sugarcane. Production was however, later resuscitated as a rotation crop on sugar plantations and as a cash crop for small farmers.
The original “Cotton Ginnery” in Barbados was located at Spencer’s Plantation in Christ Church, which is part of the property of the Grantley Adams International Airport. When Barbados’ airport expansion program required the land and the building, a plan was made to relocate the Ginnery. In 2004, a new Cotton Ginnery was built inland at Groves in the Parish of St. George.
The “Cotton Experience” Tour is available to everyone - including schools and groups. There is also a small showroom/gift shop wher e items of all description, made from West Indian Sea Island Cotton are available for purchase. These include hand-made ladies’ and gent’s garments
scarves, wraps, tablecloths, napkins, towels, satin pillow shams, handkerchiefs, bath mitts, hats, tote bags and much more. Custom made items are also available. Our showroom/gift shop is open from 10:00 am until 2:00 pm
Monday through Friday. We are closed on weekends and public holidays.
Exclusive Cottons of the Caribbean is a vertically integrated company working with plantations and small farmers to grow West Indian Sea Island Cotton (WISIC) and we are also involved in all stages of the production of finished goods Read more......Read less