ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lankan tea prices fell at this week’s Colombo auction with the cumulative auction average price of 2018 slipping below the corresponding average in 2017 for the first time this year, brokers said.
Crop intakes in tea growing regions have fallen given continuing heavy rains and high winds, although they are expected to recover as plantations have resumed application of fertiliser and other inputs, they said.
“For the first time this year, the cumulative auction average of 2018 slipped below the corresponding average in 2017,” Forbes & Walker Tea Brokers said in a report.
The national tea average for the month of May 2018 fell Rs36.37 to Rs591.24 a kilo from Rs627.61 in May 2017, the 4th highest monthly average ever recorded, the brokers said.
The average prices in May 2018 were lower for teas from all three elevations, they said.
High grown teas fell Rs12.61 to Rs546.21 a kilo in May 2018 from last year, those grown at the medium elevation fell Rs57.44 to Rs531.75 while low growns fell Rs43.27 to Rs625.31 a kilo from a record high achieved in May 2017.
Brokers John Keells noted that the tea auction average prices in May 2018 were lower than last year US dollar terms as well.
(COLOMBO, June 07, 2018)