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(Dyan Seneviratne is a Member of the World Bank Expert Panel – Plantations 2017)
RE-PLANTING & INFILLING MUST BE ‘ON-GOING’
This Paper is in backdrop of a majority of RPCs balking at prospect of planning and sustaining a well coordinated Infilling and Re-Planting Program due to [faulty] perception that the ROI on Replanting does not warrant Re-planting! A simple logical response would be that if Re-planting [and indeed Infilling] is discontinued or done haphazardly in nominal extents, then how does one counter dwindling productivity caused by die-back of tea bushes after pruning, disease, harsh weather conditions etc? The YPH which is the barometer of the health/productivity of a tea plantation depends primarily on the number of bushes per unit area, ha, acre etc and the vibrancy of each bush. If the points per ha/acre is well below the stipulated 13,500 / 5000 bushes respectively and if the vibrancy of remaining bushes are poor due to a myriad factors then the YPH would be negatively affected with its spiraling domino-effect!
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