Responsible fibre production, technical progress, regional organic cotton production, sustainable wool production and even cotton as a plastic substitute.

Bremen, 26 February 2021: The Bremen Cotton Exchange and the Fibre Institute Bremen invite you to take part in the hybrid edition of the International Cotton Conference Bremen on 17 and 18 March, under the motto “Passion for Cotton!” With top-class informative lectures, as well as varied discussion panels and its opportunities for interaction, this meeting of the world’s cotton and textile value chain will once again live up to its high reputation within the industry.

Cotton boll on the field © Bremen Cotton Exchange

The conference organisers are also not afraid to take up topics that are often the focus of public criticism. One example of this is the two-hour panel discussion on Wednesday 17 March which aims to answer key questions about processes and methods for responsible fibre production. Here, current and future standards will be compared and contrasted.


Mark Messura, Senior Vice President of the Global Supply Chain Marketing Division at Cotton Incorporated, Cary, USA will lead the panel discussion. In his career he can look back on 27 years of experience in production processes and the marketing of cotton.

His discussion partners are five participants who work in the fields of agricultural research and natural fibre production, as well as in non-governmental organisations.


La Rhea Pepper belongs to the fifth generation of a Texan cotton farming family. La Rhea is an expert in organic cotton cultivation and the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Textile Exchange. As a global non-profit organisation, Textile Exchange, together with its members, is pursuing the goal of developing sustainable production standards for different fibre and material groups.



Jessi Christiansen has been Global Cotton, Sorghum & Alfalfa Manger for Bayer Crop Science, St. Louis, USA, since 2018. Before that, she worked for Monsanto Company in various leadership positions over the past ten years. As a leader in agriculture, Bayer can shape the future of agriculture for farmers, consumers and our planet by pioneering innovation, setting new standards in sustainability, and accelerating digital transformation.  Bayer continues to make substantial investments in the cotton industry, and perhaps no example underscores this commitment better than our robust pipeline featuring the strongest germplasm and biotechnology traits in the industry.  With its bundled know-how of seed breeding, biotechnology and digital development, Bayer Crop Science is increasing both the yields and fibre quality, as well as the resilience of cotton globally.

Dalena White is General Secretary of the International Wool Textile Organisation (IWTO) in Brussels. The IWTO has represented the common interests of the international wool trade since 1930 and, through measures in the fields of research, advice, and information, ensures a future of natural wool and its processing into textiles based on sustainability.



Janet O’Regan is Director Nonwovens Marketing for Cotton Incorporated, USA. In this position, she evaluates possible uses for cotton in the area of nonwovens and other non-traditional markets. At the same time, she develops strategies for their marketing. She will present a method for processing cotton into a plastic-like material. This should help to reduce the consumption of petroleum-based single-use plastic products, such as the European Union is aiming for with its planned regulations.


The panel discussion will also include Alia Malik, Director of Data and Traceability, Better Cotton Initiative, Switzerland. For many years, the BCI has been committed to continuously improving farmers’ cotton cultivation in selected countries based on regional conditions. Their projects can have different priorities.

‘Passion for Sustainability’

Cotton harvest in India © Bremen Cotton Exchange

But that is not all: Under the headline “Passion for Sustainability”, a session will take place in the afternoon on Thursday, 18 March focusing on projects relating to sustainable cotton cultivation.

Vivek Kumar Rawal, CEO and Director, bioRe India Ltd reports on challenges and perspectives in the cultivation of organic cotton in India. Vivek Kumar Rawal sees an essential task in promoting the organic cotton sector and the development of GMO-free seeds.

“Passion for Sustainability in Cotton” is the theme of Suzanne Barratt‘s lecture. She is Manager of Communication for Field Crops, Seeds & Traits in the Europe, Middle East and Africa region at the French BASF subsidiary in Lion. She will report on the results of using the ‘Certified Sustainable FiberMax ©’ programme in Greece.


We will continue to report on the other contents of the cotton conference in future press releases. The current conference news and programme details can also be found on the conference website:

We look forward to active media coverage. Interview requests in advance are processed as quickly as possible. We are already inviting journalists to the conference. Accreditations are possible via the formular attached to this mailing. It is also available as download on the conference website at any time

Images contained in the press release may be used for publication provided that the source/author is acknowledged.

For further information and interview requests, please contact:

Bremen Cotton Exchange

Elke Hortmeyer, Director of Communications and International Relations

Tel.: +49 421 3397016  |  E-Mail:  

About the International Cotton Conference

The International Cotton Conference Bremen – the Hybrid Edition offers a total of 13 conference sessions covering highly relevant topics from the international cotton textile industry. A new feature of the virtual format is the possibility to choose between two parallel lecture strands: The ‘Conceptual Track’ deals with current challenges and fundamental issues within the industry, while the ‘Technical Track’ is mainly devoted to technological and scientific developments. All sessions are characterised by great opportunities for interaction in the form of moderated chats, surveys and questionnaires.

In addition, the ‘Interaction Track’ provides the opportunity for break-out sessions, poster presentations and individually organised virtual table discussions. A digital matchmaking service, business speed dating and extensive opportunities for discussion groups during breaks round off the networking offers. In addition, the virtual platform makes it possible to send questions to speakers at any time and to arrange to meet interesting contacts for video or audio calls.

Find more information about the virtual experience on the conference website:

The organisers of the International Cotton Conference Bremen are the Fibre Institute Bremen e. V. (FIBRE) and the Bremen Cotton Exchange.

Download press release (pdf): Panel Responsible Fibre Production

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