Cotton flower

We are working to improve sustainability in 9 key areas

Workplace: continuing to create safe, inclusive and skilled workplaces


Why is this a priority?

Wellbeing is defined by our partners at the University of Canberra’s Regional Wellbeing Survey as being a state in which a person can realise their own potential and contribute to their community.

This is a complex topic: wellbeing is influenced by a combination of physical, mental, financial, social and other factors. This complexity means no single organisation – or no single industry – is responsible for the wellbeing of individuals in a community.

But we do know from talking to cotton industry stakeholders that people know wellbeing is important, and they want to know what the industry can do to improve the wellbeing of people and cotton growing communities. Understanding wellbeing can tell us about individual health and quality of life, and it can also help us to better think how the wellbeing of communities can be improved. This has implications as wide ranging as prioritising investments, addressing the productivity of workforces, and giving insights into the resilience of farmers and regional communities to adapt to change.


What is our ultimate goal?

Our goal is to work with other stakeholders across cotton growing communities to collaboratively and continually improve the wellbeing of people living and working in these communities.


What is the context?

The cotton industry is an important part of cotton growing communities, but it is only one part. The wellbeing of individuals and communities is the sum of many aspects, some of which the industry can influence to a degree, and many of which are outside our control.

The industry plans to work with other stakeholders – all levels of government, other industries, communities and individuals – across cotton growing communities to understand what drives wellbeing, and develop a coordinated and collaborative strategy (or region-specific strategies) to improve wellbeing. There are many wellbeing factors the cotton industry can’t influence; a collaborative and coordinated strategy is needed to make it clear that everyone has a role to play in wellbeing, and make everyone’s role clear.

With a strategy in place, the cotton industry can then understand how it can best contribute to the wellbeing of people in cotton communities from its research and networks.



What is our draft target?

Develop a coordinated wellbeing strategy with other stakeholders by 2024. Targets for 2029 will be set when this strategy is in place.

The Australian cotton industry reported on wellbeing for the first time in its 2019 Sustainability Report, using data from the Regional Wellbeing Survey. It is a starting point, and more work is needed to understand the context, the impact of drought, and other factors on these baseline numbers.




Cotton Growers



Individual and community wellbeing of cotton industry



   Global Life Satisfaction (mean 0-100)



   Physical health (% reporting very good or excellent health)



   Mental health (mean 6-30 Kessler 6 psychological distress scale)



Community wellbeing (mean 1-7)



Contribution to social capital in regional communities



   Community involvement (mean 1-7)