American Cotton Shippers Association

International Cotton Institute
at the Fogleman Executive Center

Check out the beginning of our next program

American Cotton Shippers Association (external link) (ACSA) with offices in Memphis, Tennessee, and Washington, D.C., is an association of U.S. cotton merchants. The organization was formed in 1924 in order to promote fair trading practices, sanctity of contracts and to provide an environment of fair trade through established rules and industry practices. ACSA also acts to educate cotton producers and textile mill customers on the appropriate use of risk management strategies. Another activity of ACSA is promoting cotton in the U.S. and through the world.

In 1995 ACSA, along with Rhodes College in Memphis, established the International Cotton Institute thereby creating an academic partnership that lasted for eleven years. In 2006 the Institute moved to the Fogelman Business Center, a greatly improved business venue.

Each year during June and July the Institute conducts an eight-week, resident program that teaches all of the nuances of the global cotton industry. From field to fabric to risk management to contract law and trading rules, all are covered in detail by industry members who are invited to come on campus to act as guest faculty and teach what they do on a day-to-day basis. Participants are tested on proficiency several times throughout the program and must make a passing grade in order to receive a certificate.

Several field trips are conducted to a farm, cotton gin, warehouse, USDA classing facilities, and Cotton Incorporated facilities in Gary, North Carolina.

Several Leadership dinners are planned that offer the participants an opportunity to meet prominent leaders of the industry for dinners and discussions. Several other social events are planned as well.

During the fifteen years that ACSA has conducted the program 682 participants from 62 countries have completed the program. Owners and directors of cotton companies throughout the world report that the program saves probably three years of in house training and participants make a significant contribution to the day-to-day operation of their companies upon their completion of the program. Participants from all areas of the global cotton industry attend the program and get a chance to network with other members of the industry and develop lasting business and personal relationships.

All of the information about our program can be found by visiting the website at

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