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Tea industry seeks govt sops


With high quality teas fetching lower prices at the auctions due to oversupply, Indian Tea Association (ITA) has sought government sops for creating a consumption pull in the domestic market.

"The viability of the Indian tea industry is under threat due to stagnating price levels. We want the government to create a awareness campaign and a branding agenda for long-term sustainability", Chairman, ITA, A K Bhargava told reporters here on Thursday.

He said high quality teas were selling at an average of Rs.30 to Rs.40 per kg lower than that of the last year, which was way below the cost of production.

"This was trailing behind the rise in input costs of producing tea leading to the erosion of loss of most of the companies," he said.

In this regard, Tea Board’s ‘TrustTea’ certificate could be adopted as a vehicle by the government to promote the branding of tea so as to boost domestic consumption.

ITA’s Vice Chairman Azam Monem rpt Azam Monem said, "Prices of high quality teas going down is a disturbing trend".

He said Kenyan tea was in oversupply to the extent of 70 million kg, while north Indian crop was 20 million kg more.