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Sri Lanka tea crop hits new high

22 Aug, 2008 08:50:36

Aug 22, 2008 (LBO) - Sri Lanka's tea production is continuing to increase with the July crop hitting a new high, with low grown teas much in demand in the Middle East and Russia, rising sharply, brokers said.

"July tea production data released by the Sri Lanka Tea Board shows a record figure of 28.2 million kilos, eight percent more than the 2007 quantity of 26.1 million kilos," said Asia Siyaka Commodities. The previous record for the month was 26.4 million kilos back in 1997, they said in a market report. The July total is also higher than the June figure of 27.3 million kilos.

"A review of the elevation breakdown shows that Low Growns have achieved a record crop of 17 million kilos against 15.4 million kilos in June this year." However, the brokers said, this figure seems overstated and is likely to include carry-over quantities of previous months, as the declared figure do not match volumes seen in the market.

High Grown tea production has increased 20 percent to 6.7 million kilos but Mediums had dropped seven percent to 4.4 million kilos in July compared with the same month last year.

Forbes and Walker Tea Brokers said the January-July production of 199.5 million kilos for 2008 was an increase of 29.7 million kilos or 17.53 percent compared with 169.8 million kilos recorded for the same period of 2007.

The output for the seven month period was also a new high with the previous record being 190.7 million kilos in 2005. While all three elevations have shown big gains compared with the previous year, the biggest gain came from low grown teas, which make up more than half the crop.

"The biggest contribution for this increase is from the low grown elevation, an increase of 19.1 million kilos followed by the High growns and Medium growns," Forbes and Walker Tea Brokers said in a report.

Uppdaterad 2008-08-22

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