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Sharp fall in prices of Assam tea

By RITURAJ BORTHAKUR

GUWAHATI, Nov 15 - Prices of Assam tea, which had shot up significantly post-lockdown, have seen a sharp fall in the last one month. The phenomenon has been blamed on decrease in general demand.

At this week�s auction at the Guwahati Tea Auction Centre (GTAC), 1,35,474 packages of tea went under the hammer and 69 per cent of it were sold. The average price at the auction this week was Rs 185.90.

Prices of tea had jumped after the auction had resumed on April 23 after a month of lockdown due to low crop. Even old season teas were also readily bought, with western India and North India buyers participating actively in the initial period post lockdown.

In August, the average price of tea at GTAC was Rs 298.28, which was up by Rs 136.55 when compared to last year�s prices.

�This (price drop) has happened due to the increase in production, less demand and to some extent due to lower quality. Earlier this year, there was a drop in production due to lockdowns and thus the prices of CTC had climbed up by Rs 120 to Rs 140 as compared to last year�s prices,� Guwahati Tea Auction Buyers Association secretary Dinesh Bihani said.

The medium and other quality teas are down by more than Rs 50 per kg. The main reason for downfall is due to the availability of more teas available in auction and private sales.

The decline in production of tea due to the lockdown is estimated at 32 million kilograms, with the loss incurred by the industry estimated at Rs 600 crore.

The tea production in India during 2019 was 1,389.70 million kg. Tea production in Assam in 2019 was 715.49 million kg, i.e., 51.51 per cent of the total tea production in India.

Due to excess production of lower quality teas the auction prices were down last season. Some teas were even difficult to sell at Rs 50-55.

To give succour to the crisis-hit tea industry, the State government recently announced interest subvention and capital subsidy schemes, particularly targeting the orthodox tea production.

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Sharp fall in prices of Assam tea

GUWAHATI, Nov 15 - Prices of Assam tea, which had shot up significantly post-lockdown, have seen a sharp fall in the last one month. The phenomenon has been blamed on decrease in general demand.

At this week�s auction at the Guwahati Tea Auction Centre (GTAC), 1,35,474 packages of tea went under the hammer and 69 per cent of it were sold. The average price at the auction this week was Rs 185.90.

Prices of tea had jumped after the auction had resumed on April 23 after a month of lockdown due to low crop. Even old season teas were also readily bought, with western India and North India buyers participating actively in the initial period post lockdown.

In August, the average price of tea at GTAC was Rs 298.28, which was up by Rs 136.55 when compared to last year�s prices.

�This (price drop) has happened due to the increase in production, less demand and to some extent due to lower quality. Earlier this year, there was a drop in production due to lockdowns and thus the prices of CTC had climbed up by Rs 120 to Rs 140 as compared to last year�s prices,� Guwahati Tea Auction Buyers Association secretary Dinesh Bihani said.

The medium and other quality teas are down by more than Rs 50 per kg. The main reason for downfall is due to the availability of more teas available in auction and private sales.

The decline in production of tea due to the lockdown is estimated at 32 million kilograms, with the loss incurred by the industry estimated at Rs 600 crore.

The tea production in India during 2019 was 1,389.70 million kg. Tea production in Assam in 2019 was 715.49 million kg, i.e., 51.51 per cent of the total tea production in India.

Due to excess production of lower quality teas the auction prices were down last season. Some teas were even difficult to sell at Rs 50-55.

To give succour to the crisis-hit tea industry, the State government recently announced interest subvention and capital subsidy schemes, particularly targeting the orthodox tea production.

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