The Indian subcontinent is known globally for its age-old weaving industry. This industry also stands 2nd in place as the largest employment provider for the rural and semi urban population in India after agriculture. With an estimated total of 2.3 million handlooms alone, the Indian weaving industry has the world’s largest infrastructure. The Silks of India stand out with their soft textures and aesthetic appeal. The country is also the second largest silk producer in the world after China.
Recent archaeological discoveries in Harappa and Chanhu-daro suggest that sericulture, employing wild silk threads from native silkworm species, existed in South Asia during the time of the Indus Valley Civilization dating between 2450 BC and 2000 BC. There are four types of natural silk produced in India for commercial purposes. These are known as Mulberry silk, Tasar silk, Muga silk, and Eri silk.