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Sri Lanka tea prices ease down in May

ECONOMYNEXT- Sri Lanka’s tea prices continued to ease at auctions in the second auction in May from April highs, though ex-estate tea prices showed gains, with both production and exports down in 2020 amid Coronavirus disruptions.

Ex-Estate met with improved demand and Low Grown Orthodox teas saw lesser demand in the Colombo tea auction held on Wednesday and Thursday, tea brokers said.

Sri Lanka sold 5.3 million kilograms of Ceylon tea with 0.6 million kilograms of Ex-Estate tea and 2.7 million kilograms of Low Grown (Leafy/Tippy) teas increasing from 2.3 million kilograms at the previous auction.

At the previous auction on May 13 and 14 Sri Lanka sold 5.4 million kilograms of tea.

Low grown orthodox tea demand declined with an elevation average of 778.45 rupees/4.1 US dollar. OP1 graded teas fell around 50 rupees a kilogram while OP/OPA and PEK grades fell 30 rupees and 20 rupees respectively.

Country wise analysis of exports shows that the Iraq has emerged as the largest export destination from Sri Lanka followed by Turkey, Russia and Iran.

Recorded National average for May 1st sale was 187.29 rupees/US dollar, on a rupee which at the time traded at 187.29 to the greenback.

In High grown teas Best westerns and Below bests were firm while plainer sorts went up by 10-20 rupees per kilogram and more in BOP grades.

Nuwara Eliya’s gained by.20-30 rupees and more at times. Uva/Uda Pussellawa’s were dearer by 10-20 rupees.

In BOPF grades Best Westerns were irregularly firm whereas below best category declined by 10-20 rupees and more following quality. In the Plainer category, clean leaf teas were firm, whilst the others declined by 10 rupees.

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Meanwhile BOPF grade Nuwara Eliya’s were firm whereas Uda Pussellawa coloury sorts sold at last levels and the others declined by 10-20 rupees. Uva – coloury sorts were dearer by 10- 20 rupees whilst the others sold at last levels.

In Medium grown teas, BOP and BOPF grades were both 10-20 rupees dearer while well-made OP/OPA’s were firm to marginally easier. Well made PEK/PEK1’s declined sharply as Below bests were easier by 20-40 rupees a kilogram.

Select Best FBOPs were irregularly easier as others were easier by 20-40 rupees. Select best FF1’s too eased whilst others declined by.20-40rupees a kilogram and more at times.

Low grown, well-made BOP1 teas held firm while others were irregular. Meanwhile high priced OP1 teas were irregular and lower as Better OP’s declined by 30-50 rupees.

Select best BOP and BOPF grades declined while other sorts were easier following quality.

Very tippy FBOPF/FBOPF1 teas continued to attract demand while Best ad Below bests appreciated.
CTC

In CTC teas, high grown BP1s were dearer by 10 rupees a kilogram while PF1s commenced at firm to irregular levels and gained thereafter on select invoices.

Mid grown BP1 teas declined by 10-20 rupees as PF1s held firm.

Low grown BP1s maintained as PF1s declined b 20-30 rupees per kilogram and more.

The Department of Meteorology predicted heavy showers and strong winds in most planting regions in the week ahead.

Western, Uva, Udapussellawa, Sabaragamuwa and Ruhuna regions reported an increase in the crop intake, whilst the Nuwara Eliya region maintained, the report said.

In key global markets, Mombasa Auction of May 18/19 recorded fair general demand for the 186,847 packages (12,376,114.00 kilograms) on offer at easier levels and 12.62 percent remained unsold.

In Jakarta Auction, a total 5,800 packages came under the hammer this week, there was fair tending improve demand on Orthodox.

Sale no 20 will commence on May 26 and 27 starting at the usual time, brokers said.
(Colombo/May25/2020)