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EU has proposed to renew the approval of glyphosate for a period of 10 years, with restrictions

The EU submitted a draft regulation to member states, foreseeing the renewed approval of glyphosate for the EU market beyond 15 December this year, when the current approval expires. 

If passed, the regulation will mean that glyphosate – the most widely used herbicide in the EU – can continue to be used in plant protection across the EU for the next decade, but that the approval can be reconsidered at any point during this time if need be. 

However, EU countries still have the chance to block the draft regulation during a vote in the Standing Committee on Plants, Animals, Food and Feed (PAFF committee) set to be held in October. 

The Commission proposal comes on the back of a lengthy evaluation process on the safety and risks of glyphosate – a contentious question as scientists and stakeholders diverge over which risks the substance does or does not pose to human health and the environment. 

Source: Euro News (Extracts), Courtesy: Tea Exporters’ Association Sri Lanka


Tea companies likely to see 8% revenue de-growth this fiscal

The tea industry in India is expected to register an 8 per cent de-growth in revenue this financial year, led by a decline in exports.


Operating profitability is also expected to fall for the second year in a row, shedding 100 basis points (1 per cent is equal to 100 basis points) to 5 per cent, due to lower tea prices.


Profitability had fallen 150 basis points last financial year, primarily because of an increase in wages. Wages, which constitute 20 per cent of total cost of production, was hiked 15 per cent last fiscal.


Domestic demand, which accounts for 82 per cent of sales volume, should remain steady at 1,100 million kg this fiscal. However, exports, which make up 18 per cent by volume and 30 per cent by value, may slide 12 per cent on-year to 200 million kg. Last fiscal, the export volume had increased 14 per cent due to lower production in Sri Lanka, a major tea exporting country.


India as a whole contributes 23 per cent to the global tea output and employs around 1.2 million workers in the tea plantation sector.


For several years now, India’s tea industry has been struggling with issues such as rising production costs, relatively stagnant consumption, subdued prices and crop losses due to climate change. It also faces the challenge of finding a footing and

holding its ground in a competitive global market.


Source: Associated News India (Extracts), Courtesy: Tea Exporters’ Association Sri Lanka



IIT -G develop pharmaceutical and foods products from tea waste

Researchers at the Indian Institute of Technology - Guwahati (IIT -G) have developed innovative technologies for sustainable and efficient utilization of tea waste from the tea industry.


According to a recent study, tea is one of the most widely consumed beverages worldwide with world tea consumption reaching 6.3 million tons and is expected to rise to 7.4 million tons by 2025. This huge increase in tea consumption leads to an increase in industrial tea waste generation which leads to non-utilization of valuable agricultural resources and deterioration of the environment.


Because of its high lignin and low inorganic content, efficient utilization of tea industry waste demands scientifically advanced techniques. Addressing the waste utilization and management issues becomes paramount as it aligns with sustainable practices and innovative solutions, ensuring both industrial growth and ecological preservation.


Source: Shilong Times (Extracts), Courtesy: Tea Exporters’ Association Sri Lanka




Asian Tea Alliance unveils five-point action plan

Bangladesh going for 3rd auction center

The country is going to have another tea auction center in Panchagarh within the next month, the north-western district bordering India, as the cultivation of tea in the plains is becoming popular. 

At present, there are two tea auction centers – in Chattogram and in Sylhet’s Sreemangal.

The number of tea gardens in the plains of Panchagarh and Thakurgaon is increasing day by day as they are bringing in more money for the farmers. 

Once the Panchagarh auction center starts operation, tea producers in the northern region of Bangladesh will benefit from reduced transportation cost. 

Source: Nation (Extracts), Courtesy: Tea Exporters’ Association Sri Lanka


White Tea market to grow at 6.4%

The white tea market size is estimated to grow by USD 200.81 million from 2022 to 2027. The market is estimated to grow at a CAGR of 6.46%. The growth momentum will progress during the forecast period. 

APAC held the largest share of the market in 2022, and the market in the

region is estimated to witness an incremental growth of 58%. 

The demand for premium products in the region is rapidly increasing due to the increasing disposable income of consumers, and awareness for health and wellness among the people. Another factor that is driving the market is the growing popularity of the Internet and the increasing trend of online shopping. 


Source: PRNewswire/Yahoo Finance (Extracts), Courtesy: Tea Exporters’ Association Sri Lanka



UK tea plantation showcase Robot tea plucker


England's only tea plantation has showcased the world's first ROBOTIC tea harvester. The 'Tea bot' at Tregothnan in Cornwall, claims to be the first ever harvesting robot of its kind. Powered by solar panels, the driverless vehicle has already been put into practice.


Tea bot is available for purchase with 12 weeks delivery - for just £175,000.


It has a range of five miles, which includes approximately 10,000 tea bushes. It is the first time a machine is able to pick tea at a higher quality than a human. Tea bot has incredibly precise snipping blades and a completely joined up harvesting process that can pick around two tons of tea per charge.


Source: News Flair (Extracts), Courtesy: Tea Exporters’ Association Sri Lanka





Organic Tea market to hit $ 2.4 B by 2031


The global organic tea market was estimated at $905.4 million in 2021 and is expected to hit $2.4 billion by 2031, registering a CAGR of 10.5% from 2022 to 2031.


The region that dominated the global organic tea market in 2021 was Asia-Pacific, and this dominance is anticipated to continue throughout the forecast period. Health-related products are becoming more popular among consumers in China, India, Indonesia, and Japan. Compared to regular tea, organic tea is seen as being healthier.


Herbal and green tea are becoming more and more popular as ways to enhance one's

health and appearance. The market across Asia-Pacific generated nearly three-fifths of the global organic tea market revenue in 2021, and is anticipated to retain the lion’s share by 2031.


North America, on the other hand, would portray the fastest CAGR of 12.5% during the forecast period.


Source: EIN Press wire (Extracts), Courtesy: Tea Exporters’ Association Sri Lanka


Germany & Spain have opposite views on glyphosate


The agriculture ministers of Spain and Germany have opposite views on what the European Food Safety Authority’s (EFSA) recent verdict on glyphosate should mean for the decision on re-approving the contentious herbicide.


In early July, EFSA presented the main conclusions to its long-awaited risk assessment of glyphosate, the contentious but most widely used herbicide in the EU. According to the agency, ‘no areas of critical concern’ were found when it comes to potential harmful impacts of using the substance in plant protection.


Source: Euro News (Extracts), Courtesy: Tea Exporters’ Association Sri Lanka


Unrest Unsettles Kenya Tea Sector

Unrest is unsettling Kenya’s tea sector just as it began to steady itself after two difficult years of declining exports, high unemployment, and domestic conflict over the fast-rising cost of food and housing.


Curtailing operations cost Kenya’s tea industry millions of shillings a week in lost production. Availability has also impacted prices. Mombasa Tea Auction reported prices declined 5% following five weeks of political protests beginning in March.


Kenya accounts for 40% of sales at the Mombasa Auction. Shutting down the nation’s tea gardens would cost Kenya $2.5 million weekly in lost foreign exchange currency (KSh350 million).


Uncertainty led Tanzania ’s Ministry of Agriculture to announce in late May that Tanzania’s teas (valued at $38.8 million in 2021) would be sold at the digital auction based in Dar Es Salaam beginning in June.


Source: STiR C&T (Extracts), Courtesy: Tea Exporters’ Association Sri Lanka



 Container Rates Return to Pre-Pandemic Normal



The cost of shipping tea and coffee has declined to pre -pandemic rates as containers become more plentiful and prices dip to $850 TEU. The decline in shipping rates is due to slowing customer demand.


Container contract rates are near 2019 levels, and depleted tea inventories are increasing trade as the year progresses. At the height of the pandemic, spot rates for 40-foot containers loaded with tea travelling from Shanghai to Los Angeles surged to $12,172. The cost of transporting tea spiked again when the World Container Index (WCI) rose to $10,377 in September 2021.


Rates are now 36% lower than the 10-year average of $2,688 per 40ft container and falling. Container rates have been falling for months but have not hit bottom.


In late 2022, the average price for shipping a TEU to the EU from India was around $1,500. The average composite index for the year-to-date is $1,868 per FEU, which is $820 lower than the 10-year average of $2,688. While the WCI is 36% lower, indicating a return to more normal prices, rates remain 21% higher than average 2019 (pre-pandemic) rates of $1,420.


Source: STiR C&T (Extracts), Courtesy: Tea Exporters’ Association Sri Lanka




Ceylon Tea Wine to hit the market soon


Sri Lanka patented Ceylon Tea Wine is expected to hit the market as early as in two months. The patent for Ceylon Tea Wine has been sold to International Distillers Limited.


There is a big demand for Ceylon Tea and there will be a big demand for Ceylon Tea Wine. It has a good taste and aroma. The trials have been completed and the product is being readied for the market. 


Source: Economy Next (Extracts), Courtesy: Tea Exporters’ Association Sri Lanka

B’desh Tea Exports drops


Despite the steady growth in tea production over the past decade, Bangladesh's tea exports have taken a hit due to mounting domestic demand, driven by a growing population and urbanization.


According to the state-run Bangladesh Tea Board (BTB), tea production reached an impressive 94 million kilograms in 2022, marking a 53 per cent increase from the 62.52 million kilograms produced in 2012.


Yet, this growth didn't translate into booming exports. From the 2022 yield, a mere 0.78 million kilograms were exported, raking in Tk 196.31 million. This is a notable drop from 2020 when the country exported 2. 17 million kilograms of tea, earning Tk 347.14 million.


Simultaneously, sources reveal that the nation annually imports just shy of a million kilograms of tea. Insiders warn that if the current pace of domestic consumption persists, Bangladesh might need to import more tea in the coming years.


With 167 tea gardens spanning 280,000 acres and employing over 360,000 people, Bangladesh is the world's ninth-largest tea producer.


Source: Daily Sun (Extracts), Courtesy: Tea Exporters’ Association Sri Lanka



Kenyan increase investment in Orthodox Tea


Farmers are set to reap big after the Kenya Tea Development Agency began installing orthodox tea processing lines in 13 factories.

The initiative is set to increase farmers’ earnings as orthodox tea fetches high prices in global markets compared to the crush, tear, curl (CTC) tea.


Currently, only 10 KTDA-managed factories across all tea growing areas process orthodox tea.


Kenya is out to stamp its authority as the top exporter of orthodox tea to major markets across the world through the project, which will increase production and guarantee farmers high returns.


Currently a kilo of orthodox tea is fetching up to Sh 952 in the global markets compared to CTC tea, which fetches about Sh408 per kilo.


The tea sector was drastically affected by the prolonged drought that hit the country. This saw tea production in the months of January and February decline by 60 per cent.


Tea production has increased by more than 90 per cent from 62 million kilos to 117 million kilos in the last two months thanks to the rains.



Source: The Star (Extracts), Courtesy: Tea Exporters’ Association Sri Lanka



Organic farming could slash agricultural emissions


Organic tea farming can play a key role in reducing the effects of climate change. By limiting the use of manufactured chemical fertilisers and pesticides, organic tea farming can work within natural systems to reduce the risk of environmental pollution and greenhouse gas emissions.


Organic methods are not only beneficial for the environment, but also for the tea farming industry as it confronts the challenges posed by climate change by using less energy than synthetic fertilizers derived from burning fossil fuels.


While sustainability is important in farming practices, so too is understanding the carbon footprint of the tea industry.


Climate change could have significant implications for tea production, especially in countries expected to be more affected by extreme weather and rising temperatures.


Source: MSN/The Nation (Extracts), Courtesy: Tea Exporters’ Association Sri Lanka




Germany plans to ban Glyphosate by end 2023


The continued approval of the widely-used herbicide glyphosate is a source of controversy both in Germany and the EU. While critics warn of considerable environmental and human health risks, proponents see no scientific basis for this.


In line with its coalition deal, Germany’s agriculture ministry has already taken steps towards banning glyphosate. Glyphosate should no longer be used in Germany after 1 January 2024.  


But that might not be so easy to achieve.


In the coming months, the EU is set to decide on whether it will renew its own authorization of glyphosate as an active substance in plant protection products, which is currently in place until 15 December 2023.


If glyphosate remains authorized in the EU after the end of the year, the German government can only impose restrictions on its use in specific cases or areas of well-founded reasons – rather than a general ban.


Source: Euro News (Extracts), Courtesy: Tea Exporters’ Association Sri Lanka


How China tea industry deals with climate change


The Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences has surveyed tea plantations all over China and says that last year’s drought had a devastating impact on the quality and health of the country’s tea trees. Thousands of acres of trees died. Some were so parched they turned burnt red.


China is the largest producer and exporter of tea in the world. In 2022, tea production reached a record 3.35 million tons, of which 375,000 tons – about $2.1 billion worth – were exported to countries around the globe, from the United States to Ghana.


Climate change poses an existential threat to this industry. Rising temperatures cause tea plants to produce more polyphenols, resulting in more bitter, less valuable tea. And a market defined by terroir – teas produced meters apart command wildly different prices – is facing the potential extinction of its most

famous tea-growing regions.


Extreme weather events are only projected to get worse in the future. One study, spanning six decades of temperature data, found that heat waves are getting hotter, becoming more frequent, and lasting longer in China.


As extreme heat, drought, and rainfall become more frequent and harder to predict, tea-growing regions will have to adapt to survive. That starts with rethinking cultivation practices to prioritize adaptability over raw production.


Source: Sixth Tone (Extracts), Courtesy: Tea Exporters’ Association Sri Lanka



Darjeeling tea demand drops in Europe


The Darjeeling tea industry is witnessing at least 10-15% fall in demand for its world-famous aromatic tea in Europe compared to last year, a contraction that has virtually coincided with Germany slipping into recession.


The total exports of Darjeeling tea last year stood at over 3 million kg. About 45-50% of the annual tea production generally gets exported. Europe and Japan are the two large overseas markets for this premium tea, the first product to get a geographical identification (GI) tag in India.


According to exporters, quantity off take this year is also low in Japan primarily due to weak yen. There is a lot of price pressure too. For Darjeeling first flush tea, there has been a shortage of high-quality crops and a surplus of mediocre quality due to erratic weather this year.


Up to the middle of April, the first flush crop had been down by 30% due to hot and dry weather conditions. Thereafter, the hills received abundant rainfall, resulting in a bumper crop during the end of April and first week of May. But this crop quality was low-medium.


Darjeeling tea production stood at 6.6 million kg in 2022 against 7.01 million kg in 2021.


Source: Financial Express (Extracts), Courtesy: Tea Exporters’ Association Sri Lanka



Rwanda focus on promotion


National Agricultural Export Development Board (NAEB) has announced plans to focus on using technology and engaging youths in sustainable tea production, and promoting consumption following

impressive growth in the last ten years.


Statistics from NAEB show that tea production increased from 22,184 tons in 2012 to more than 38,000 tons in 2022 and foreign exchange revenues also increased by 90%, from $56 million in 2013 to more than $106 million this year.


For instance, in 2022 Rwanda’s tea sold at a premium price at the Mombasa auction, outdoing price offers from other regional countries as international buyers stay choosy on quality.


Market data from the auction shows the price of Rwandan tea at $3.02 a kilo in the sale held recently, against Kenya ’s tea at $2.72, Burundi ’s $2.44, Uganda ’s $1.27 and Tanzania ’s $1.15 for the same quantity.


Statistics from NAEB show that tea production increased from 22,184 tons in 2012 to more than 38, 000 tons in 2022 and foreign exchange revenues also increased by 90%, from $56 million in 2013 to more than $106 million this year.


Source: KT Press (Extracts), Courtesy: Tea Exporters’ Association Sri Lanka



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