Print Edition - 2015-04-06 | MONEY
Buying prices of tea leaves fixed
Apr 5, 2015-
It’s been two weeks since the tea processing season began, and most tea factories in the region have fixed procurement prices of green tea leaves. This is the price that tea farmers receive. The rates range from Rs35 to Rs45 per kg. Quality tea leaves cost as much as Rs45 per kg. Organic tea factories have set the price at Rs60 per kg.
According to tea factories, they have given priority to the quality of tea and hence have fixed appropriate prices. The tea leaves harvested at the beginning of the season fetch higher prices. The prices are higher this year with some teas being sold for Rs65 per kg.
The district is home to a number of big tea gardens, namely Kanyam, Ilam, Soktim and Chilimkot which operate under the District Tea Development Corporation. Apart from the privately owned Gorkha Tea Estate, other tea factories do not have big tea gardens of their own so they have to depend on two dozen large and 39 small gardens belonging to small and medium scale farmers for their tea leaves. Around 12,000 farmers are engaged in growing tea leaves in Ilam. During the current season, Ilam district produces around 100,000 kg of tea per day. The villages near Darjeeling sell their tea leaves to Indian factories as they offer relatively higher prices.
According to Shiva Ghimire of Shree Antu, Nepali tea factories have been receiving second grade tea in terms of quality. “Traders from Darjeeling purchase high quality tea directly from the gardens,” Ghimire said. Around 3,000 kg of tea are being exported to Darjeeling daily, he added.
The tea factories offer good prices during the first few months of the season, then the rates start declining, said Gyanu Rai of Fikkal. Even though the quality of the tea produced during the beginning of the season is good, production is low.
Published: 06-04-2015 09:04