Kovai Cora Cotton

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Kovai Cora cotton
Geographical indication
Descriptionsarees manufactured in Coimbatore
AreaCoimbatore, Tamil Nadu
Materialcotton, silk

Kovai Cora cotton or Kovai Kora cotton is a type of saree made in the Coimbatore region in Tamil Nadu, India.[1][2] It has been recognized as a Geographical indication by the Government of India in 2014-15.[3][4]


Kovai Kora cotton is made from a blend of silk and cotton.[5] A superior quality cotton yarn is mixed with traditional silk to produce kora cotton.[6] The sarees have bright colored border designs with occasional use of shining zari.[6] The required designs are weaved using the loom using combinations of colored cotton and silk threads and the borders are added later.[6]


The kora cotton sarees are weaved on traditional hand-looms.[7] Every saree takes up to three days for weaving and the weavers are paid ranging from 450 (US$6.50) to 850 (US$12) per saree.[7] The saree is weaved by traditional weaving families in the districts of Coimbatore, Tiruppur and Erode in the Kongu Nadu region of Tamil Nadu.[7] Sirumugai in Coimbatore district is the major producer of kora cotton sarees.[7]


82 co-operative societies in the districts of Coimbatore, Tiruppur and Erode have been certified as authorized dealers of Kovai Kora cotton by the Government of Tamil Nadu.[5] Kora cotton sarees are priced between 800 (US$12) to 1,200 (US$17).[6] The sales of kora cotton sarees have seen a decline over the last three decades due to change in dressing preferences of women.[7] Soft silk sarees look grander and colorful with designer blouses.[7] Lower demand and higher remunerations for weaving soft silk sarees have led to weavers switching to weaving silk sarees.[7] The GI tag helped increase sales by 15% in 2014-15. But the spike in demand was able to convince weavers to switch back to weaving kora sarees and the sales declined the following year.[7] The Government of Tamil Nadu sells the sarees through government run Co-optex stores.[8]


Kora cotton sarees weaved from traditional hand-looms face competition from cheaper cotton sarees weaved through power-looms.[9] The cotton sarees produced through power-looms cost 400 (US$5.80) to 600 (US$8.70) compared to hand woven sarees which cost between 900 (US$13) and 1,200 (US$17) per saree.[9] High excise duty on yarn used by the hand-looms leading to higher production costs and greater efficiency of power-looms have contributed to the fall in demand for hand woven kora cotton sarees.[9] Weavers have often demanded assistance from the Government of Tamil Nadu for subsidizing production.[9]

Geographical Indication[edit]

In 2014, the Government of Tamil Nadu applied for Geographical Indication for Kovai Kora cotton sarees.[10] The Government of India recognized it as a Geographical indication officially since the year 2014-15.[4]


  1. ^ "Industry of Coimbatore". Coimbatore Corporation. Retrieved 28 June 2015.
  2. ^ "31 ethnic Indian products given". Financial Express. Retrieved 28 June 2015.
  3. ^ "FE Editorial Indication of incompetence". Financial Express. Retrieved 28 June 2015.
  4. ^ a b "Geographical indication". Government of India. Archived from the original on 26 August 2013. Retrieved 28 June 2015.
  5. ^ a b "Kovai Kora cotton gets GI tag". The Hindu. 9 July 2014.
  6. ^ a b c d "Kovai Kora cotton sarees". sareez.com. Retrieved 29 January 2016.
  7. ^ a b c d e f g h "Despite GI tag, Kora silk has no takers". Times of India. 24 April 2014.
  8. ^ "Cooptex sets itself Rs.13.50 cr. target for Deepavali season". The Hindu. 19 September 2015.
  9. ^ a b c d "Hard times for handloom `kora' silk units". The Hindu. 15 September 2003.
  10. ^ "GI tag: TN trails Karnataka with 18 products". Times of India. 29 August 2013.