Ceylon Tea: Time to take the spots off the lion?


Re-creating the brand

 It has been made known that the Sri Lanka Tea Board is now finalising plans to embark on an ambitious international promotional program to promote the tea produced in our country. We have no information available yet of the campaign details but we assume that Ceylon Tea will be portrayed  as being superior to any tea in the same category originating from any other producing country. 

 

Presently, all tea produced in Sri Lanka which complies with basic minimum standards qualifies to be described and labelled as ‘Pure Ceylon Tea Packed in Sri Lanka’ and is entitled to use the Lion Logo – The Symbol of Quality, as commonly depicted on the packaging. The mark itself has undergone a few minor changes over time but the same ‘spotted’ Lion has been running for over half a century.

 

The Lion Logo presently in use

The mark widely registered in many countries is a stylised Lion upholding a sword (as in our National Flag) but having 17 spots as seen in the picture. This symbol was conceived when Ceylon Tea and its marketing activities were largely controlled and directed by London and I believe the 17 spots represent the 17 main markets in which Ceylon Tea was found to be thriving in at the time the symbol was conceived.

 

“Unusual, one might think, as lions are neither indigenous to, nor found roaming wild in the country. So, why the lion? And even more curiously why spotted? The answer is in legends that stretch back to the early centuries of Sri Lanka’s early history. Prince Vijaya, the first recorded King of Sri Lanka (543-503 BCE), was from India and believed to be the part lion on his maternal side. When he arrived in Sri Lanka he brought a flag featuring a lion denoting his lineage. The powerful king of beasts became the symbol of the newly formed kingdom of Tambapanni through to present day Sri Lanka, so named since its independence from British rule in 1948.” 

 

In all probability it is this symbol that would be used in promotion and advertising as the distinctive ‘mark’ to identity Ceylon Tea and to distinguish it from others in the proposed campaign.

 

In regard to the ‘spots’, ironically in the present day reality of how people perceive Ceylon Tea, the spots more fittingly impute and imply the taint and blemish that consumers discover in products marketed worldwide with the symbol of quality depicting pure Ceylon Tea.  

 

While we have less control over what happens to our tea outside our country, I question the wisdom of even permitting all the tea produced in our country to use the logo as the distinctive mark to identify the supremacy of Ceylon Tea. That would be an unsustainable claim for supremacy? 

 

Sadly, not all the tea produced in this country can find its place in that distinctive and special class we can justifiably promote and portray as being different and exceptional. It would be injurious to the preservation of the good name that Ceylon Tea still enjoys to label every tea grown and grade manufactured in Sri Lanka as supremely Ceylon Tea. It would be degrading and unfair to say the least, to the excellent teas that we do produce and to those who strive to excellence taking pride in what they deliver.

 

Is all tea grown in Sri Lanka today – ‘Ceylon Tea’?

 

So one does have to find a solution to protect the integrity of the brand we are trying to re-create and re-position. Continuing to sell all the tea we produce here as Ceylon Tea would be a mistake and only further grow the perception that Ceylon Tea is no longer what it used to be and continue to erode the brand image that Ceylon Tea labelled and sold as Pure Ceylon Tea once enjoyed by many. The growing suspicion that it is adulterated will have even wider acceptance. We know that in many markets, it is adulterated, and we have no control or power to effectively regulate those practices even within, let alone the practices we know take place without our shores.

 

Champagne

 

In a recent article written by a veteran in the industry and published in your newspaper reference was made to ‘Champagne’ as rigidly governed by the laws in force in France. I feel sure that it is not only the importation of equivalents and counterfeits that are prohibited but not all wines produced even in Champagne would pass the stringent controls imposed by the ‘Appellation Controlee’ of the region to be labelled as Champagne. The mere fact of where a tea or wine is grown does not by itself give it the right to be branded as supreme?

 

In the case of Ceylon Tea the wide variance in the characteristics of tea grown in the different districts and elevations and the significant percentage changes in the volumes produced in the Low Grown areas in the island in the last 50 years does not lend itself to the  case to establish one brand into the future to signify ‘all’.

 

The case I am building up to, is the need to create a new and distinctive mark or marks, to distinguish those teas (and only those teas) we Sri Lankans can really be proud of to market to the world as unique, supreme, unequalled and matchless.

 

The history of Ceylon Tea

It is useful for us to understand at this time the history behind the emergence of this claim to superiority and how it came about and I have been consistently digesting the material published in 1967, in the book titled ‘A hundred Years of Ceylon Tea’ by D.M. Forrest and would like to quote from excerpts, but only confined in this article to the pages of the book relating to the subject I am writing about.  The author who from 1945 served in the Empire Tea Bureau in the UK; as an ex journalist and war time official is  amply qualified to add credence to the facts as recorded and this is reinforced by the extensive research to which he refers to in the preface to the book. 

 

In fact, it is the Empire Tea Bureaux which evolved into the Ceylon Tea Centre and triggered of one country promotion. This I discovered was entirely due to fortuitous circumstances for Ceylon Tea and which gave eventually gave birth to Ceylon Tea Promotion.

 

Until that time, the slogans used to promote tea were generic campaigns – ‘tea as tea’ ‘join the tea set’, etc.  All the tea producing countries were contributing to a common fund to promote tea drinking focusing on Britain, the Irish Republic, The USA, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, the Middle East, Central and West Africa, South Africa, Netherlands, Switzerland, and Denmark.

 

By the middle of the last century, after World War II, The International Market Expansion Board had emerged from its long twilight of rationing and restrictions and in 1952 were all set with a big budget for the next year approved by all the producing countries. It was then that Indonesia first, soon followed by Pakistan announcing they could not afford to pay their share while India withdrew from the Board altogether saying they could promote Indian teas by themselves than by subscribing to a general fund. 

 

It was at this point of time that Sri Lanka (then Ceylon) being relatively much better positioned financially with large reserves following the Korean Boom and the prices fetched for rubber, decided it was the opportunity to advance and not a time for retreat and agreed to a full year’s contribution upfront! This decision by the other producing countries to withdraw was later a matter of regret to many of them we understand.

 

Supremacy of Ceylon Tea

This sequence of events led to the whole focus of tea promotion in UK and its allied countries concentrating on encouraging traders and consumers alike to demand Pure Ceylon Tea. So it is a fact, whether we like it or not, that we owe the creation and origins of the Ceylon Tea Brand to the British. Of course it must be said in the same breath that they were the biggest beneficiaries of this course of events as most of the marketing was entirely in their hands and used by brands owned by British companies and emerging multi nationals. The survivors of the International Tea Marketing Expansion Board evolved into propagandists for Ceylon Tea and eventually became the promotion agency for the Ceylon Tea Propaganda Board.

 

The consumer demand for pure Ceylon Tea grew and where a “pure Ceylon was not feasible,” blends with a high Ceylon content became increasingly popular particularly with the Trade. Interestingly, even those blends which had a percentage of teas of other origins were permitted to use the Lion Symbol.

 

In regard to the raging debate amongst tea men rapidly developing into a storm currently, I found the following paragraphs from the book of great relevance and I quote the author’s words;

 

“Many of us who have lived for years with this problem have come to believe that somehow tea has taken a wrong turn in the world’s mass markets. Admittedly, the sheer size of the latter (as Tommy Lipton discovered all those years ago) would make it impossible to provide everyone with a fine aromatic tea from the mountains or plains of

 

“Which leads to another question. ‘Is Ceylon Tea then so different’? The sceptic interposes. Not so different as chalk from cheese or, say Lapsang Souchong from a strong black Assam. If one had to draw a simple distinction between typical Ceylon Tea and nearly all its rivals, I suppose the firmest claim would be for superiority of flavour. Nobody knows just how this comes about, but the fact is that so much of it is grown on open hillsides near or above the 4000ft. mark, with the sun shining on them, and the wind blowing in from the sea must have something to do with it”…

 

The lion without spot or blemish

 

Ceylon Tea: Pure and supreme

The time is right perhaps to re-create the brand image of Pure Ceylon Tea and restore its rightful place to its former pristine place and glory. It would be best left to marketing and communication specialists how best this could be conceptualised, designed and achieved but in order not to lose the link it is suggested we remain with a Lion mark, but this time without spot or speckle and not boxed-in as before. The tea regulators and administrators would also have a responsibility in establishing Appellation Controls in the different districts as in France for wine where teas to qualify to use the description on the label only if it truly represents the character of tea in that district, e.g. Uva, Dimbula, Nuwara Eliya, etc.

 

Perhaps the spotted Lion may be continued as it already has been widely registered and would remain the symbol of quality for products packed in Sri Lanka but clearly distinguished from tea from Sri Lanka that we wish to re-present as being supreme. For want of a better yardstick only tea fetching over a weekly regulated bench mark (bar) will qualify to find its place amongst the tea described Ceylon Tea Pure and Supreme. Such a measure would also encourage producers (at least some of them) to strive for excellence in producing teas of the finest quality on the one hand attaining the ‘premium’ label and also give solace to those marketers of Pure Ceylon Tea whose aim is to offer only the best, generating value for the country. The focus for these premium players would be less on volume with the objective being declared as being the best and not the biggest.

 

To protect the integrity of the new mark, products which are required to be packed in Sri Lanka will have to develop a method of tamper proof sealing. Many of us in the trade know what happens to our 10 kg packs outside the country?

 

This new mark would necessarily entail an unavoidable degree of investment for global registration. Sri Lanka would soon have in place new intellectual property laws as a signatory to the Montreal Protocol. This would give faster and greater protection to the new mark in all member countries with a single application. 

 

Daily FT, 24th November 2017.

Bangladesh tea prices rise on winter demand


Dhaka (Reuters): Tea prices in Bangladesh rose 2.5% at the weekly auction due to strong winter demand, despite there being a higher volume on offer.

 

Bangladeshi tea fetched an average price of 240.35 taka ($2.80) per kg at the auction on Tuesday, compared with 234.43 taka at the previous sale, National Brokers said.

 

There was strong demand as buyers wanted to stock up for the winter season although supplies were larger than last week, a senior official with the National Brokers said.

 

Demand for tea in Bangladesh usually rises in winter.

 

Around 13.8% of the 2.36 million kg offered at the sole auction centre in Chittagong remained unsold. In the previous auction, 8.7% of the 2.36 million kg on offer was unsold.

 

Bangladesh’s tea production rose nearly 27% last year to a record 85 million kg, a harvest that was seen as big enough to make imports unnecessary.

 

The South Asian country was the world’s fifth-largest tea exporter in the 1990s but is now a net importer due to a surge in domestic consumption.

 

Daily FT, 24th November 2017.

 

Ceylon Tea Promotion at Royal Botanical Gardens, Ontario


Ceylon Tea was promoted at a ‘Tea Festival’ organised by the Royal Botanical Garden in Burlington, Ontario, in partnership with the Consulate General of Sri Lanka in Toronto and the Tea Association of Canada, held on 4-5 November at the Royal Botanical Garden in Burlington.

Ceylon Tea samples from the regions of Dimbula, Nuwara Eliya, Kandy, Uva, Uda Pussellawa, Ruhuna and Sabaragamuwa were displayed and hot tea from the above regions was served to all the visitors during the two-day event. Free Ceylon Tea samples, provided by the Sri Lanka Tea Board were distributed among almost 1,000 participants. Along with the Consulate General of Sri Lanka, 30 tea vendors and other private sector entities took part at the event. 

 

By participating at the event, the Consulate General was able to create wider awareness among the participants on Sri Lanka’s rich tea culture, health benefits, different flavours, processing techniques and presentation styles. 

 

A documentary on 150 years of Ceylon Tea was also screened at the event. Participants also had the opportunity to learn about history of tea including oolong tea and Tang dynasty tea, tea botany, modern tea cultivation, production practices, tea tasting, the art of pairing tea with chocolate, difference in Asian and Western ideas on tea as well as tea blogging. Sri Lankan and Chinese traditional dance performances also took place at the Festival. Sri Lankan traditional dance performed by Anudi Sirimanna of Rangara Performing Arts was among the highlights of the event. 

 

Daily FT, 13th November 2017.

 

Mahagastotte and Alma estates establish new records!


Mahagastotte and Alma estates surpass their own record prices and establish new record prices at the weekly tea auctions held on 31 October.

 

Mahagastotte Estate

Pedro Estate achieved an all-time record price of Rs. 980 per kg under the selling mark ‘Mahagastotte’ for a BOPF grade surpassing their previous record price of Rs. 900 per kg, in the Nuwara Eliya agro climatic planting district. This line of tea was purchased by M/s., Unilever Lipton Ceylon Ltd.


Alma Estate

Alma Estate bettered their previous record price of Rs. 750 per kg and established a new all-time record price of Rs. 780 per kg for a OP1 grade in the Udapussellawa elevational category. This invoice was purchased by M/s., Sinbad Ltd.

 

Alma Estate is situated in Kandapola, at an elevation of 1,450 metres above sea level and has a production capacity of 600,000 kg of made tea per annum. This estate is managed by Chula De Alwis and Ranjan Walpola of Nuwara Eliya Valley Plantations Ltd. as a joint venture with Mathurata Plantations PLC. 

 

The above record breaking teas were marketed by M/s., Forbes & Walker Tea Brokers Ltd.

 

Daily Ft, 06th November 2017.

 

 

Bangladesh tea prices rise for seventh week

Dhaka (Reuters): Tea prices in Bangladesh rose at the weekly auction for the seventh time in a row due to strong demand for quality leaves amid tight supplies.

 

Bangladeshi tea fetched an average price of 229.72 taka ($ 2.79) per kg at the auction last week compared with 229.62 taka at the previous sale, the National Brokers said. There was strong demand and buyers were ready to pay premiums while supplies were lower than in the last sale, it said.

 

About 10.4% of the 2.36 million kg offered at the sole auction centre in Chittagong remained unsold. In the previous auction, 12.8% of the 2.78 million kg on offer was unsold.

 

Bangladesh’s tea production rose nearly 27% last year to a record 85 million kg, a harvest that was seen as big enough to make imports unnecessary.

 

The South Asian country was the world’s fifth-largest tea exporter in the 1990s, but is now a net importer due to a surge in domestic consumption.

 

Daily FT, 16th October 2017.

Court Lodge and new Hopewell Estate achieve all time records whilst Alma surpasses own record

Court Lodge Estate

Court Lodge Estate achieved an all time record price of Rs. 800 per kg for a BOPF grade in the Nuwara Eliya category. This line of tea was purchased by M/s., Dilmah Ceylon Tea Company PLC. 

Court Lodge Estate is situated in Kandapola, Nuwara Eliya at an elevation of 2012 metres above sea level and has an annual production capacity of 500,000 kg of made tea per annum. This estate is certified under Rain Forest Alliance, ISO 22000: 2005, UTZ and Ethical Tea Partnership. Court Lodge is managed by Thamal Manamperi and comes under the purview of Udapussellawa Plantations PLC. 

Alma Estate

Alma Estate established an all time record price of Rs. 760 per kg for a BOP grade in the Udapussellawa elevational category, surpassing their previous record price of 720 for the same grade. This week’s invoice was purchased by M/s. Inter Tea Ltd.

Alma Estate is situated in Kandapola, at an elevation of 1450 metres above sea level and has a production capacity of 600,000 kg of made tea per annum. This estate is managed by Chula De Alwis and Ranjan Walpola of Nuwara Eliya Valley Plantations Ltd. as a joint venture with Mathurata Plantations PLC. 

 

New Hopewell Estate

New Hopewell Estate under the selling mark Chandrika Estate achieved an all time record price of Rs. 740 per kg for a BOP1A grade. This estate is situated in Balangoda at an elevation of 540 metres above sea level. New Hopewell is certified under HACCP and ISO 22000:2005 Management System Certified for Manufacture of Black Tea, Food Sector. This estate is managed by Senhora Synergies, headed by Ranjan Walpola, Managing Director.

These record breaking teas were marketed by M/s., Forbes & Walker Tea Brokers Ltd. 

 

Daily FT, 16th October 2017.

Tea Board Chief praises RPCs for overcoming severe challenges, calls for state-led improvements to w

*Commends RPCs for investments into replanting over and above similar   initiatives in smallholder sector 

*Strongly criticises complete failure in procedure for banning of glyphosate

*Attacks Government failure to adequately fund Tea Research Institute 

*Calls for urgent improvements to urban townships, a relocation of workers out   of plantations

 

Addressing a gathering of the country’s most respected plantation industry professionals at the 163rd Annual General Meeting of the Planters’ Association of Ceylon (PA), Sri Lanka Tea Board Chairman, Rohan Pethiyagoda strongly commended the country’s regional plantation companies (RPCs) for their continuing success in the face of severe adversity and called for proactive steps to be taken by the Government to resolve the long-standing challenges faced by the sector’s labour force.

 

“I just want to say that in an environment where you come in for so much criticism at so many levels, I am an unstinting admirer of the RPCs. Unfortunately however, the RPCs. However become a whipping boy for politicians. You rarely hear a kind word said about you from amongst politicians at every level. We often hear that the RPCs are too big, but your average size is just 3,500 hectares which is an area of 7 x 5 kilometres as a rectangle which is certainly not an excessive amount of land to manage. 

 

“Hence, I don’t believe any further fragmentation is really justified and I certainly don’t agree with the attrition that we have seen of your land which has been acquired for other purposes without nearly enough consideration being given. Economies of scale and the fact that that 20 RPCs is still a lot of diversity means that in an environment where management capacity, especially at the senior levels is limited we need to be very thoughtful if we are looking at any substantial changes in the model that now exists,” he stated.

 

 Shifting his attention to the current model prevalent in the RPCs, Pethiyagoda called for gradual but sweeping changes to the lives of estate sector employees and their families, noting that many of these issues were not in fact the fault of RPCs but rather a long-standing 

 

“We need a new plantation society. You have 200,000 labour residents on your estates and their families – almost 1 million people – for whom you provide housing, healthcare, education and nutrition. And though I know that many of you will disagree with what I’m about to say, I think the thing that we have failed to give your employees and their families is freedom. 

 

“The plantation workers are yet to become full citizens in the meaningful sense of citizenship in this country. We have failed to help them integrate with the rest of society. And there are reasons for this; it’s not your fault. It is part of the legacy that you inherited from colonial times, in which transportation was not easy and it was convenient to have your labour resident at their place of work.”

 

Noting that such a socio-economic model is roundly considered an anomaly in modern times, Pethiyagoda noted that this feature of Sri Lanka’s colonial legacy had served together with political inaction had resulted in the towns and urban centres in Sri Lanka’s plantation regions had received little to no support to facilitate expansion and development.

 

“Even as they expand in population they can’t expand in area because they remain tiny islands of humanity in this vast ocean of tea. No Government has found the political will to allow these townships to develop into modern, urban units. The rightful place of plantation workers is in towns, not estates. 

 

“In the future, the model we have today will not persist. Hence it is better to make that transition peacefully and attract people to work in the estates from a diversity of backgrounds rather than look at the principle of indentured labour which we inherited from our colonial masters. It cannot happen overnight but I think it has to happen at some point,” Pethiyagoda predicted. 

 

Drawing a comparison between the socio-economic impact of the garment industry’s establishment in Sri Lanka and that of the plantation industry, he noted that beyond providing employment opportunities, the garment industry was able to spark a social transformation through the empowerment of women, helping them to truly become tax payers and citizens of the country while gaining much greater independence and control over their life and standard of living. 

 

“I think the tea industry is going to see such an emancipation of estate workers in the near future. If it doesn’t, I don’t think that you will be able to say that your plantation industry is truly a part of the modern economy. The unions and the politicians will not do this. 

 

“They won’t because it pays unions to have members. Because it pays unions to have members and fees and it pays politicians to have workers who will vote on block with unions who are aligned to politicians and parties. The estate labour has become captive into an economy, a social system and into a polity which they have very little control of and which does very little for them. As a result, they have suffered a huge number of social consequences,” he asserted. 

 

Pethiyagoda went on to strongly criticise current and previous Governments for consistently making crucial mistakes that drastically hampered the performance of RPCs and the wider tea industry, citing examples of prohibiting the harvesting of timber and the banning of glyphosate. 

 

“The Government encourages you to plant fire wood and then discourages you from harvesting it. Even wood lots that you have planted for timber cannot be harvested. This is stupidity simply because the whole idea of forestry is that you harvest it. If you plant a crop, you have to have the right to harvest it. In the 1970s many of your factories owned micro hydro plants, you were energy self-sufficient. The Government of the time stated that they had an energy surplus and forced connection to the grid. 

 

“Then two years ago we banned glyphosate. Who should have taken that decision? We have a registrar of pesticides, we have a fertiliser secretariat, we have a medical research institute and a tea research institute. Nobody was consulted. Someone woke up one morning and said: ‘oo lets ban Glyphosate’ and to this day there is nobody who is accountable for that decision,” he stated. 

 

Heaping further criticism on the Government, Pethiyagoda went on to highlight the failure of the Tea Research Institute to recommend a single alternative to glyphosate, in turn caused by a chronic lack of funding to the institute, which last year was only allocated Rs. 90 million for research. 

 

“What is the consequence? Many plantation owners have started using alternatives that are not authorised. These are now coming up in various importing countries. Last month we had Diuron discovered in Germany in excessive quantities, MCPA has been a problem in Japan. Sooner or later this is going to lead to importing countries putting restrictions on Sri Lankan tea imports and this is a serious problem but I cannot wake up this Government to think seriously about it. Goodness knows we have tried.” 

 

“So despite all these handicaps, despite being hobbled at every stage in your 20 year history as Regional Plantation Companies, you’ve done a fantastic job to bring the industry to where it is today and for that you deserve the nation’s gratitude and my thanks, which you have.”  

 

Daily FT, 11th October 2017.

Forbes carries away 4 all-time record prices at Colombo Tea Auctions held on 2/3 October

Delmar Estate

Delmar Estate established yet another all-time record price of Rs. 800 for a Pekoe grade in the Udapussellawa elevational category. This invoice was purchased by M/s. Empire Teas Ltd.

Currently Delmar holds all time record prices for OP, OP1, BOP1 and Pekoe grades in its elevation category.

Delmar Estate is situated in Halgranoya, in the Uda-pussellawa region, at an elevation of 1524 metres above sea level and is certified under ISO 9001:2008 and ISO 22000:2005 Management System Certified for Manufacture of Black Tea, Food Sector. This estate is managed by Sudath Liyanage and comes under the purview of Udapusselawa Plantations PLC. 

Dunsinane Estate

 Dunsinane Estate established an all-time record price of Rs. 730 per kg for a PF1 grade in the western high grown CTC category. This invoice was purchased by M/s., Uniworld Teas Ltd.

Dunsinane is situated at an elevation of 1400 metres above sea level at the Pundaluoya Valley in the Dimbula planting district. It is an ISO 22000:2005 and Rainforest Alliance certified facility with an annual production capacity of over a million kilos of made tea per annum. This estate is managed by Asela Udumulla and comes under the purview of Elpitiya Plantations PLC.

Mahagastotte Estate

Pedro Estate achieved an all-time record price of Rs. 720 per kg under the selling mark ‘Mahagastotte’ for a FGS 1 grade, in the Nuwara Eliya agro climatic planting district. This line of tea was purchased by M/s., Uniworld Teas Ltd.

Pedro Estate is situated in the Nuwara Eliya planting district and the factory at an elevation of 1,750 metres above sea level. This estate is currently certified under Rainforest Alliance, ISO22000:2005, HACCP, Ethical Tea Partnership and UTZ Code of Conduct for Tea. This estate is managed by Anura Senanayake, Deputy General Manager, and comes under the purview of Kelani Valley Plantation PLC.

Vellai Oya

 VellaiOya Estate achieved an all-time record price of Rs. 750 per kg for a BOPF grade for the second consecutive week in the western medium elevational category. This line of tea was purchased by M/s., Uniworld Tea Ltd.

Vellai Oya is situated in Watawala at an elevation of 1,331 metres above sea level and has a production capacity of a million kg of made tea per annum. This estate is certified under Rainforest Alliance, Ethical Tea Partnership and Fair Trade Labelling Organisation. The Manager of Vellai Oya is Prasanna Premachandra and comes under the purview of Watawala Plantations PLC.

 

Daily FT, 06th October 2017.

Brombil Tea Factory achieves all time record price for BOPF Sp grade

 

Brombil Tea Factory, situated in Palawatte – Kalutara district, achieved an all-time record price of Rs. 880 for a BOPF Sp grade at the weekly tea auctions held on 27 September. This line of tea was purchased by M/s Shan Tea Ltd. and marketed by M/s Forbes & Walker Tea Brokers Ltd. Brombil Tea Factory is Rain Forest Alliance and Ethical Tea Partnership certified. Brombil Tea Factory is one of the largest tea factories in Sri Lanka which produces both Orthodox and CTC teas and is renowned for the manufacture of good quality teas. This factory is owned by Aruna De Silva and managed by Indika Nallaperuma under the Evergreen Group.

 

Daily FT, 29th September 2017.

All time record price for Wikiliya Tea Factory

Wikiliya Tea Factory situated in Balangoda, Sabaragamuwa District, achieved an all time record price of Rs. 730 per kg for BOP1A grade at the weekly tea auction held on 26 September and was marketed by M/s. Forbes & Walker Tea Brokers Ltd.

 

Wikiliya Tea Factory is managed by Senhora Synergies, headed by Managing Director Ranjan Walpola.  

 

Daily FT, 29th September 2017.

Forbes bags 5 record prices at weekly tea auctions

Shawlands Estate

Shawlands Estate established yet another all-time record price of Rs. 1,400 for an OP1 grade in the Uva medium grown elevational category surpassing their previous record price of Rs. 1,250 for the same grade which was achieved last week. This invoice was purchased by M/s., Tea-Link Colombo Ltd.
 
Shawlands Estate is situated in Lunugala, Passara at an elevation of 990 metres above sea level and is certified under Rainforest Alliance, Ethical Tea Partnership, ISO 22000:2005/9001:2008 Management System Certified for Manufacture of Black Tea Food Sector and CQC. This estate is managed by Naresh Sahabandu and comes under the purview of Hapugastenna Plantations PLC. 
 
Dunsinane Estate
 
 Dunsinane Estate established an all-time record price of Rs. 710 per kg for a PF1 grade in the western high grown CTC category surpassing their own record price of Rs. 690 per kg for this grade.
 
Dunsinane is situated at an elevation of 1,400 metres above sea level at the Pundaluoya Valley in the Dimbula planting district. It is an ISO 22000:2005 and Rainforest alliance certified facility with an annual production capacity of over a million kilos of made tea per annum. This estate is managed by Asela Udumulla and comes under the purview of Elpitiya Plantations PLC.Kenmare Estate
 
Kenmare (Concordia) Estate established an all-time record price of Rs. 780 per kg for a BOPF grade in the Nuwara Eliya category. This line of tea was purchased by M/s., Unilever Lipton Ceylon Ltd. 
 
Kenmare(Concordia) Estate is situated in Kandapola, Nuwara Eliya at an elevation of 1,900 metres above sea level and has an annual production capacity of 900,000 kg of made tea per annum. This estate is certified under Rain Forest Alliance, Fair Trade, ISO 9001, ISO 22000 and Ethical Tea Partnership. Kenmare is managed by Lasantha Samarakoon and comes under the purview of Udapussellawa Plantations PLC. 
 
Delmar Estate
 
Delmar estate established yet another all-time record price of Rs. 760 for a Pekoe in the Uva/Udapussellawa elevational category. This invoice was purchased by M/s. George Steuart Teas Ltd.
 
Delmar Estate is situated in Halgranoya, in the Uda-pussellawa region, at an elevation of 1524 metres above sea level and is certified under ISO 9001:2008 & ISO 22000:2005 Management System Certified for Manufacture of Black Tea, Food Sector. This estate is managed by Sudath Liyanage and comes under the purview of Udapusselawa Plantations PLC. 
 
Gordon Estate
 
 
Gordon Estate too established an all-time record price of Rs. 760 per kg for a Pekoe in the Uva/Udapussellawa elevational category this week. This invoice was purchased by M/s. Unitrades Ltd.
 
Gordon Estate is situated in Uda-pussellawa, at an elevation of 1273 metres above sea level. This estate is managed by Richard Ohlmus and comes under the purview of Udapusselawa Plantations PLC. 
 
Daily FT, 22nd September 2017.

About F&W

Forbes & Walker was set up in 1881 as a partnership between James Forbes and Chapmen Walker. Although there is no actual record of the date on which it was established the very first cash book, still in the possession of the Finance Director, indicates the brokerages were earned from 1st August 1881. In Sir Thomas Villiers' book “Mercantile Lore” the date of establishment of Forbes & Walker has been put down      Read More...

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