Tea production drop by 31m kilos in a year

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A farmer picking tea in Kericho. [Wilberforce Okwiri, Standard]

Tea production dropped in the country by 38 million kilogrammes in the past one year, the tea agency has announced.

The Tea Board of Kenya (TBK) report blamed the reduction in production on climate change and revealed that the country produced 538m kg compared to the 570m kg recorded in 2020.

Peris Mudida, the board’s Acting Chief Executive Officer, said the lower production was experienced in the first eight months of the year and the delayed onset and poorly distributed rainfall during the short rainfall season.

“The rainfall was poor throughout the country, especially in the months and October and November and also in December over the western highlands of the country due to La Nina weather conditions,” she said.

The effects of adverse weather conditions were more pronounced in tea-growing areas within the East of Rift.

According to the TBK report released during the occasion to mark Word Tea celebrations held in Kericho, production within the region was lower by 21.46 million kg from 201.05 million kg recorded in 2020 to 179.59 million kilos.

In the West of Rift, production dropped by 10.25m kg from 368.48m kg recorded in 2020 to 358.23m kg. Nonetheless, the auction prices improved from an average of $2.01 per kilogramme for the year 2020 to $2.10 per kilogram of tea. [Nikko Tanui]

“Smallholder sub-sector had significant improvement in average prices,” said Mudida.

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