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LOGO: Journal of Cotton Science


Cotton Seed Size – What is the “Fuzz” all About?

Authors: Andrea B. Maeda, Jane K. Dever, Murilo M. Maeda, and Carol M. Kelly
Pages: 81-89
Breeding and Genetics
DOI: (

Breeding efforts to improve lint yields in cotton may have shifted photosynthate partitioning to fibers during seed development resulting in a reduction in seed size in modern cotton cultivars. While the textile industry is the main consumer of cotton, changes in seed quality including size and composition could negatively impact other sectors of the agriculture industry that utilize cotton raw materials other than fiber. There is evidence of smaller cotton seeds impacting germination and seedling vigor as well as a reduction in oil content as seed size decreases. Moreover, downstream sectors of the cotton industry such as gins, crushers, and feedlots have been trying to draw attention to the consequences of having extremely small seeds to their operations, such as reduced ginning efficiency, seedcoat fragments, challenges in the delinting and decortication process, changes in meal nutrition, etc. This review focuses on the impacts of pursuing ever-increasing lint percent in modern cotton cultivars at the expense of seed size and attempts to highlight some of the less-known concerns of downstream cotton industry sectors.