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What was cotton known as gold?

Hello folks,

I have been studying the history of cotton and came across the phrase "cotton is known as gold." I am curious to know more about this saying and its origins.

I understand that cotton played a significant role in the economy of many countries in the past, particularly during the Industrial Revolution. But why was it called "gold"? Was it because of its value as a commodity or its importance in the textile industry?

Any insights on this topic would be greatly appreciated. Thank you in advance.

All Replies


I work in the field of sustainable agriculture and have had the chance to work with cotton farmers. From my experience, I can say that cotton is still known as gold in many regions of the world.

Cotton cultivation requires a lot of water and pesticides, which can have adverse effects on the environment and public health. However, many cotton farmers are switching to more sustainable and eco-friendly farming methods, such as organic cotton farming and drip irrigation.

I have also seen firsthand how the introduction of fair trade practices has benefited cotton farmers in developing countries. Fair trade policies ensure that farmers receive a fair price for their crops and are not exploited by middlemen. As a result, cotton farming can become a more sustainable and profitable enterprise.

In conclusion, although cotton may have had negative environmental and social impacts in the past, there is a growing movement towards more sustainable and ethical cotton farming practices. This will not only benefit the environment but also the livelihoods of cotton farmers around the world.


As someone who has worked in the textile industry for many years, I can attest to the fact that cotton really is like gold. Cotton is a commodity that is always in high demand, and its price fluctuates constantly.

I remember a time when there was a sudden shortage of cotton due to a natural disaster, and the price of cotton shot up overnight. As a result, we had to raise our prices on clothing that contained cotton, and it became difficult to find suppliers who could still sell cotton at a reasonable price.

However, despite the occasional price spikes and supply issues, cotton remains a staple in the textile industry. Cotton fabrics are beloved for their softness, breathability, and durability, and they are used in everything from t-shirts to bed sheets.

In conclusion, cotton truly is like gold, in that it is a valuable and versatile commodity that has played a significant role in our history and continues to be an important part of our economy and daily lives.


I have always been fascinated by the history of cotton, and I completely agree that it was called "gold" because of its economic significance.

In fact, growing up in a small village in India, I witnessed firsthand how much cotton production and trade influenced the local economy. Cotton was a major cash crop, and many farmers earned their livelihoods from it. The cotton trade brought in much-needed revenue and boosted the local textile industry.

I also believe that cotton was called "gold" because of its versatility in the textile industry. Cotton fibers are strong and durable, yet soft and comfortable to wear. They can be easily woven into a variety of fabrics, from lightweight summer clothes to heavy winter garments.

Overall, I think the saying "cotton is known as gold" perfectly captures the importance of this crop in our economic and social history.


As a horticulturist, I have researched extensively on the environmental impact of cotton production. While cotton has been referred to as gold and has played a significant role in many economies, it is no secret that traditional cotton cultivation can take a heavy toll on the planet.

Cotton is a water-intensive crop that often requires pesticides and synthetic fertilizers to yield high-quality fibers. These chemicals can contaminate soil and water sources, causing harm to other plants, wildlife, and even humans.

As a result, there is increasing interest in developing sustainable and organic cotton production methods. Sustainable cotton agriculture can reduce the environmental impact of cotton production by using organic fertilizers, reducing soil tillage, and promoting natural pest control methods.

In my experience, sustainable cotton can produce cotton with comparable quality to traditional cotton while also reducing the impact on the environment. From an environmental point of view, this is a significant step forward in cotton production as the demand for natural fibers continues to increase.

In conclusion, while cotton has been an essential commodity for centuries, there is an urgent need to promote sustainable cotton cultivation methods. With informed choices and concerted effort, we can move towards more responsible cotton production methods that can benefit the planet and improve the quality of life for farmers and their communities.


I have been working as a fashion designer for the past ten years, and I can say that cotton is a crucial fabric in the fashion industry. It is a versatile fabric that can be used to create a wide range of clothing styles, from casual wear to high-end fashion.

What I appreciate about cotton is that it is a breathable fabric that is perfect for all seasons. It is soft, comfortable, and absorbs moisture, making it perfect for summer wear. At the same time, it can also be layered to create warm, cozy outfits in winter.

Moreover, cotton has many advantages over synthetic fabrics. Unlike synthetics, cotton is biodegradable and does not contribute to landfills. It is also hypoallergenic and suitable for sensitive skin.

However, the downside of cotton is its environmental impact. Traditional cotton farming requires a lot of water and pesticides, which can harm the environment and public health. That's why, as a fashion designer, I try to source organic cotton and recycled cotton fabrics whenever possible to reduce the environmental footprint of my designs.

To summarize, despite the challenges and drawbacks, cotton remains a beloved and versatile fabric in the fashion industry. By opting for ethical and sustainable cotton production methods, it has the potential to become an even better choice for clothing production in the future.


As a history enthusiast, I can understand why cotton was referred to as gold in the past. During the Industrial Revolution, cotton was an essential commodity that fueled the growth of the textile industry.

Many people used to view cotton as a symbol of wealth and status due to its high value and importance in the economy. Cotton production led to the creation of many jobs, and the textile mills that produced cotton fabrics often became centers of economic activity in their regions.

Even though cotton had a significant role to play in the past, the way we view cotton has changed now. With an awareness of sustainability and ethical practices, the focus on organic cotton and fair trade has grown. This change is largely driven by the consumers and their growing consciousness about the impact of their choices on the environment and society.

In conclusion, cotton was known as gold in the past, but times have changed, and we are now more focused on sustainability and ethical practices that benefit both the environment and society.


As a home textile designer, I also appreciate the versatility of cotton as a fabric. Not only is it widely used in clothing, but it is also a popular choice for home textiles such as sheets, towels, and curtains.

Cotton's softness and durability make it ideal for home use. In particular, it is a great choice for bedding because it is cooler than synthetic materials, making it comfortable during the summer months. It also has a high absorbency rate, which is important for towels and other bathroom textiles.

But beyond its practical advantages, cotton also adds a sense of comfort and warmth to a home's interior. Cotton textiles can be found in a range of styles, from classic and traditional to modern and playful, making them perfect for any type of home decor.

However, like other contributors in this thread, I am conscious of the environmental impact of cotton production. So I, too, endeavor to source cotton from ethical and sustainable sources, and have started exploring recycled cotton options as well.

In conclusion, cotton is a wonderful fabric that brings a sense of comfort, practicality, and style to our homes. With an increasing number of sustainable options being made available to designers like myself, it is becoming easier to enjoy the many benefits of cotton without harming the environment.


I come from a family that has been involved in the cotton industry for generations. So, for us, cotton literally was, and still is, like gold.

Growing up, I spent many summers on my grandfather's cotton farm, and I saw how much hard work and dedication went into growing the cotton crop. Although my family focused on producing upland cotton, which is a lower-quality variety, we still took immense pride in our work and did our best to produce the best quality cotton we could.

Today, my family still works in the cotton industry, but we have shifted our focus towards sustainable and ethical practices, such as organic cotton farming and fair trade. We understand that the cotton industry has had negative impacts, but we believe that a better future is possible if we work towards implementing responsible practices and policies.

In conclusion, for my family, cotton is not just a commodity, but a way of life. We have always respected the value that cotton brings, and we are committed to ensuring that it continues to be a sustainable and ethical industry for generations to come.

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