Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Would like to invite sceptics who are not convinced that malkha is a rural vertical chain & less energy intensive than mainstream textile production to visit one, or several, of our 4 current working centres in Andhra. Of course others are welcome too.

Visitors can see the unbaled cotton being fed into our Gramaspinner carder, the carded sliver being drawn down in the subsequent draw-frame & fly-frame, and then being spun into yarn on second-hand, cut-down ring-frames sourced from spinning mills, or, as we hope in some new centres, being spun on motorized 8 or 12 spindle charkhas, and finally the malkha yarn being woven on handlooms. In one village it happens all in one building, in others looms are in weaver homes or rented sheds nearby.

The springiness and lustre of the malkha fabric, its texture, colour-holding, absorbency & feel can't be achieved any other way.

Malkha eliminates baling, unbaling & blowroom, doing away with a whole chunk of energy needs, not to even consider the humongous quantities of fresh water that are needed daily to cool & humidify large-scale spinning mills. Once we set up a common facilities centre we hope to do our own ginning and lessen some of the distances over which the cotton travels between ginning and the downstream processes. And the fact that it is a small-scale, dispersed process will, we hope and expect, allow for use of alternative, renewable energy rather than grid power or the generators that we use now when there are power cuts.

We hope to put up more malkha centres as demand for the fabric grows.

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