The Arizona economy is based on five industries and every school child in Arizona learns about the five C’s that provide income for the state. Those are Copper, Cotton, Cattle, Citrus, and Climate. Today I’ve posted a photo of a cotton plant with its bloom or “boll” wide open and ready to be harvested.
Arizona is known for Supima cotton, a variety that is widely considered the finest cotton in the world. The name comes from Superior Pima after the Pima Indians who helped the U.S. Department of Agriculture develop it in the early 1900’s.
Today, the Supima fiber quality is very well regulated. Clothing makers like LL Bean and Land’s End pay $5000.00 a year to use the Supima name on their labels and the pieces of clothing with those labels are routinely tested and the DNA mapped to make sure the cotton in pure Supima. Even Ralph Lauren uses Supima cotton to make his famously fashionable sheets because the infamous Egyptian cotton does not have the same quality control standards.
All of that planning and commerce around that tiny little cotton ball not much bigger than the cotton balls we all use to apply make-up or wash a wound.