Indian Tea Production Drops Momentum as Assam’s tea production shrinks. Overall tea output of the country is declined by 1.3% during the year 2015. India is the world’s second biggest tea producer and exports CTC grade to many foreign countries.
Poor weather conditions have led to a lesser crop thus impacting the domestic tea output. The poor show is due to a decline in output from Assam Valley that contributes to 60% of domestic tea production. Tea production fell after a gap of five years. Assam’s production fell to 589.77 mkg from 621.87 mkg. West Bengal, however, posted an increase in production to 329.31 mkg from 312.88 mkg. South India’s output dropped marginally to 241.18 mkg from 241.79 mkg. Here, Tamil Nadu was the only State to produce a lower output.
Crisis in Tea Plantations
The plantation sector in the North East region, where 65% of the total production is carried out, facing cost escalation issue. So a section of the farmers are in crisis. In the southern states like Kerala, there are issues of increasing the wage.
Reduced output as a result of erratic rainfall caused by climate change is another big problem. Tea plantations have been affected by a rise in temperatures in tea-growing areas and a change in rainfall patterns.
Even though tea production has dropped, the price remains low. This is because of lower exports. Average auction prices of tea are lower in both south and north India as compared to last year by 5-8%. Indian tea association forecasts, tea output is likely to decline to 17 million kg this year due to the vagaries of nature. The Tea Board of India is a state run agency, managed by the Government of India established to promote the cultivation, processing, and domestic trade as well as export of tea from India.