Sericulture is the commercial culturing of silkworms to produce silk for use in the textiles industry.
Silk has a long tradition of commercial production, dating back some 2500 years and silk is known to have been used for 2000 years before that. It originated in China where its universal appeal led to the development of the 'Silk Road' - from Xi'an to Rome and then across the Atlantic.
The silk trade is now a multi-billion dollar industry and silk is produced commercially by Japan, India, South Korea, the Commonwealth of Independent States and Brazil, as well as in China.
A male silkworm moth (Bombyx mori) and two cocoons
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