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Despite hopes of a turnaround with fertiliser, Sri Lanka’s tea production began the year with lower volumes.
The woes of the tea industry continue with January crop volumes decreasing by 3.68 million kilos (16.13%) to 19.14 million kilos against the fertiliser issue.
Data analysed by Forbes and Walkers Research confirmed that the country’s tea production drop was seen at all elevation levels compared to the corresponding January 2022.
High-grown elevation produced 3.52 million kilos, a drop of 1.8 million kilos year-on-year (YoY) whilst, medium elevation production was 2.39 million kilos compared with 3.78 million kilos in January 2022, a deficit of 1.4 million kilos.
Low-grown elevation dominated by the smallholder sector recorded 13 million kilos, losing approximately 0.4 million kilos or 3% against January 2022. The production of green was at 161,634 kilos in January 2023, down by 18% YoY.
As per the Sri Lanka Tea Board, country’s total national production for the year 2022, was 251.50 million kilos compared with 299.49 million kilos in 2021. This was the lowest in 26 years when 246 million kilos were produced in 1995.
Sri Lanka expects tea production to recover in 2023 to 300 million kilos, whilst targeting export earnings of $ 1.5 billion for the year.
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