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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Title: Overview Of The U.S. Cotton Classification System and a Comparison of the U.S. and Chinese Cotton Classing Parameters

Author
item Cui, Xiaoliang

Submitted to: Meeting Proceedings
Publication Type: Proceedings
Publication Acceptance Date: October 3, 2008
Publication Date: October 24, 2008
Citation: Cui, X. 2008. Overview Of The U.S. Cotton Classification System and a Comparison of the U.S. and Chinese Cotton Classing Parameters. Meeting Proceedings. Paper #12.

Interpretive Summary: All U.S. cotton bales are classed by the Cotton Division of the Agriculture Marketing Service (AMS) of the United States Department of Agriculture. Since 1991, more than 220 million bales have been tested by AMS. AMS has 12 classing offices with 290 High Volume Instruments (HVI). AMS has various quality assurance programs to ensure the test results from all offices are consistent and accurate. One of the programs is “check lot.” In classing season with this program, 1% of the total samples is randomly selected from each classing office, and shipped to the Quality Assurance Lab for retesting. All test levels adhere to the Universal Standards. The test results are transmitted to a central data base. Government agencies, cotton merchants, and textile manufacturers can obtain date from the database. The accurate test results by AMS’s official classing provide quality assurance for the U.S. cotton. The Chinese government started to reform its cotton classing system in 2004, adopting the USDA’s classing model. The cotton classing is carried out by China Fiber Inspection Bureau (CFIB). The classing parameters of the U.S. and the Chinese are compared in the presentation. One of the major differences is trash characterization. In the U.S., trash is characterized by Leaf Grade, while gravimetric trash content is used in China. Although the color Rd and +b are measured in China, a color chart, which converts Rd and +b into color grades, is under development. The proposed color chart for Chinese Upland cotton has 13 color grades. The Chinese Permanent Bale Identification (PBI) is printed at gins when a cotton bale is made. This enables the Chinese PBI to contain the weight and moisture content of the bale.

Technical Abstract: All U.S. cotton bales are classed by the Cotton Division of the Agriculture Marketing Service (AMS) of the United States Department of Agriculture. Since 1991, more than 220 million bales have been tested by AMS. AMS has 12 classing offices with 290 High Volume Instruments (HVI). AMS has various quality assurance programs to ensure the test results from all offices are consistent and accurate. One of the programs is “check lot.” In classing season with this program, 1% of the total samples is randomly selected from each classing office, and shipped to the Quality Assurance Lab for retesting. All test levels adhere to the Universal Standards. The test results are transmitted to a central data base. Government agencies, cotton merchants, and textile manufacturers can obtain date from the database. The accurate test results by AMS’s official classing provide quality assurance for the U.S. cotton. The Chinese government started to reform its cotton classing system in 2004, adopting the USDA’s classing model. The cotton classing is carried out by China Fiber Inspection Bureau (CFIB). The classing parameters of the U.S. and the Chinese are compared in the presentation. One of the major differences is trash characterization. In the U.S., trash is characterized by Leaf Grade, while gravimetric trash content is used in China. Although the color Rd and +b are measured in China, a color chart, which converts Rd and +b into color grades, is under development. The proposed color chart for Chinese Upland cotton has 13 color grades. The Chinese Permanent Bale Identification (PBI) is printed at gins when a cotton bale is made. This enables the Chinese PBI to contain the weight and moisture content of the bale.

Last Modified: 11/26/2014
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