With drought reducing the green leaf supply, majority of the factories are working only for three days in a week and that too for a single shift. So, the declining trend in the arrival of tea for the auctions of Coonoor Tea Trade Association witnessed in the last few weeks continues.

The volume of offer for Sale No: 11 ending Friday has declined to the lowest so far this calendar. Of the 8.60 lakh kg coming up for sale, about 59,000 kg comprises unsold in previous auctions. Fresh tea accounts for 8.01 lakh kg – among the lowest so far this year.

This volume is as much as one lakh kg less than the hitherto lowest volume offered last week and 1.28 lakh kg less than the offer this time last year.

Of the 8.60 lakh kg on offer, 6.46 lakh kg are leaf grade and 2.14 lakh kg dust grade.

As much as 8.05 lakh kg belong to CTC variety and only 0.55 lakh kg, orthodox variety. The proportion of orthodox teas continues to be low in both the leaf and dust grades. In the leaf counter, only 0.35 lakh kg were orthodox while 6.11 lakh kg, CTC. Among the dusts, only 0.20 lakh kg was accounted for by orthodox while 1.94 lakh kg, CTC.

The low offer is helping increased absorption to satisfy upcountry demand. Last week, as much as 97 per cent of the offer were sold. Homedale Tea Factory tea, auctioned by Global Tea Brokers, topped the CTC market when Mittal Tea Company bought it for Rs 209 a kg.

The pekoe dust grade of Cross Hill Tea Factory, auctioned by J. Thomas and Company, topped CTC Dust auction when Santosh Tea Industries bought it for Rs 199 a kg. Vigneshwar Estate got Rs 181. In all, 104 CTC marks got Rs 125 and more a kg. Among orthodox teas, Chamraj got Rs 275 a kg, Highfield Estate Rs 220, Kodanad Rs 188, Kairbetta Rs 184, Kil Kotagiri Rs 181 and Corsley Rs 180. In all, 33 marks got Rs 125 and more.

(This article was published on March 14, 2013)
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