- by webmaster webmaster
- Interesting / Аrticle
The world’s tea producers are seeing a serious drop in tea production due to the confinement of people to their homes during the Covid 19 pandemic. This has also forced the cessation of tea harvesting in several key regions. The global prevention measures are escalating at the most inopportune time for Indian tea growers – the time when the most valuable harvest of India’s “champagne of teas” is about to take place. For more than a month, work has stopped in Assam, northeastern India. According to tea experts, India has very specific production periods called harvests. The first Darjeeling harvest was severely affected. This harvest is usually harvested in March and April and represents about 40% of the annual revenue.
Other tea-exporting countries such as Kenya, Sri Lanka and Vietnam also suffered heavy losses. Sri Lanka saw its lowest tea production in decades in the first quarter. Exports also suffered compared to the same period last year, falling by 14.1 million kilograms to 59.5 million kilograms. Holding weekly tea auctions has been a tradition in the country for 125 years. The auctions are among the largest in the world and attract around 200 people. They are usually held in Colombo, but this year in April they were held online for the first time to comply with social distancing measures. After work on the plantations stopped completely for several weeks, the government decided to allow agricultural work to save some of the production. Hundreds of thousands of workers continue to harvest the tea, but other areas of production, such as packaging, are still not operating at full capacity. Meanwhile, in Vietnam, exports fell 2.5% to 26,000 tonnes in the first quarter of 2020.
Along with the complications caused by the Covid 19 outbreaks, tea growers are also facing an unprecedented drought.
Only Kenya, a major supplier of tea to the UK, has so far avoided major losses as the climate and sufficient rainfall allow for year-round production. The International Tea Committee predicts that the country’s production could grow by 15% this year. Although there has been no disruption to tea supply in the UK, prices are likely to continue to rise, driven by the work stoppage and speculation of shortages.