Following a substantial increase in tea production in North India in March, the country’s overall output in the first quarter (Q1) of current calendar has risen by as much 26.98 per cent over Q1 of 2015.

The Tea Board has now announced that in March, North Indian production rose by 25.97 million kg (mkg) to reach 53.04 mkg. On the contrary, South India’s production fell by 1.39 mkg to dip to 15.30 mkg.

Collectively, India’s production in March rose by 24.58 mkg to reach 68.34 mkg.

“Because of this, the cumulative output in the North in the first quarter of current calendar has increased by 25.12 mkg to reach 58.62 mkg. South Indian output, however, was 3.19 mkg less to dip to 44.61 mkg. The El Nino impact was there,” said Rajesh Gupta, compiler of annual Global Tea Digest .

“Collectively, India’s production in the first quarter of 2016 rose to 103.23 mkg from 81.30 mkg in Q1 of 2015. This increase of 21.93 mkg marked a growth of 26.98 per cent”, he noted.

This has reversed the early apprehension prevailing until February that for the second consecutive year, India was heading for a lower production in 2016. Now, it appears that if this trend continues, India’s production this year could be around 1215 mkg – the highest in the annals of Indian tea industry.

In the North, both Assam and West Bengal posted a higher output in Q1 while in the South, both Tamil Nadu and Kerala, lower production.

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