176.3 million kilos tea sold in GTAC in 2015
The quantity of tea auctioned in Guwahati Tea Auction Centre (GTAC) in 2015 was 176.3 million kilos. This was higher than the quantity of tea auctioned in Kolkata tea auction centre which was 149.2 million kilos. This is indicative of the fact that the sale of tea is increasing.
Assam’s tea production has increased three-fold since the establishment of GTAC in 1970 and last year, the total production of tea in the state was 614.5 million kilos. Assam produces more than 50% of the total production in India. “In India consumption of tea is very less at around 750-800 grams per head per year whereas in other countries the quantity is more than one-two kilos. The tea industry should promote Indian tea so as to increase the sale of tea in the country and the tea producers should concentrate on producing quality tea,” said Deepak Kr. Sarma, senior tea taster, buyer and blender while speaking to G Plus.
Sarma informed that the first tea auction took place at the Stadium Guest House in 1970 and with the demand of the sale of tea in auction the GTAC was established in the same year. There are four sections of tea trade namely tea producers, tea buyers, brokers and warehouse owners. GTAC is the only auction centre controlled directly by the government. The Tea Board is directly controlling the auctioning system and according to the rules of Tea Board 50% of the tea should be sold through the auction centre.
The tea board has also introduced the pan India auction which many buyers hesitated but Sarma said that the pan India system is useful through which buyers can have a look at the tea from different countries on one screen and can choose from which country they would buy the tea. The pan India should be user friendly. The tea board has also introduced a new rule that payment has to be made within 14 days from the date of auction and the system runs in cash and carry.
Sarma further informed that the auction price in GTAC from Sale 14 to Sale 36 has come down to Rs. 6.23. “Many producers alleged that they do not get the adequate price for the tea as the price has come down but the quality of tea should be maintained or improved in order to get the benefit from the sale,” Sarma said.
Although Assam is one of the largest producers of tea, it still it has only one auction centre while Kolkata and South India has two centres. In order to increase the quantity of sale of tea a second auction centre will be set up at Jorhat and with the establishment of that centre, the towns and cities in upper Assam will be benefitted as a large quantity of tea can be auctioned in the second centre too. With the second auction centre being set up more job opportunities will be opened for the unemployed.
The season for cultivation of tea is March to December and it is dependent on the weather. The Kenyan tea production has gone up by 60% while the demand of Assam tea has gone down last year.
The latest figures of the Tea Board state that West Bengal contributes about 25%, Tamil Nadu contributes about 15%, Kerala about 6%, Karnataka 0.5% and other states contribute 1.4% to the total amount of tea that the country produces. Moreover, there are two lakh small tea growers in India, Assam alone accounting for more than half these numbers and 35% is taken from the small tea growers of the total production.
Second tea auction centre to be set up at Jorhat
The first auction of tea was done at Stadium Guest House in 1970
Assam alone produces more than 50% tea of the total production in India
In 2015, 176.3 million kilos of tea was auctioned in GTAC
Pan-India auction has been introduced by Tea Board
750-800 grams of tea consumed in India per head per year
The auction price of GTAC has come down to Rs 6.23 from Sale 14 to Sale 36
Quantity of tea sold in GTAC:
2013- 163.0 million kilos
2014- 167.5 million kilos
2015- 176.3 million kilos
Exports of India Tea:
2013- 219 million kilos
2014- 207.4 million kilos
2015- 217.6 million kilos
Production of Tea in Assam:
2012- 590 million kilos
2013- 621 million kilos
2014- 610 million kilos
2015- 614.5 million kilos