Coronavirus impact: Nilgiris tea trade grinds to a halt

PS Sundar Coonoor | Updated on March 24, 2020

Tea trade in the Nilgiris has come to a standstill with the operations of the Coonoor Tea Trade Association (CTTA), warehouses and brokers being shut down till March 30.

Consequently, Sale No: 13 of the CTTA auction scheduled for Thursday and Friday has been deferred until further notice. At current prices, this means teas worth about ₹10.68 crore already catalogued for this auction will have to wait indefinitely before they are sold.

The CTTA will review the situation on March 30 and decide on further course of action.

Teaserve’s Sale No: 13 scheduled for Tuesday was also deferred until further notice.

The Tea Trade Association of Coimbatore has postponed its Sale No: 13 to be held this week to April 1. It has decided to drop Sale No: 14 and 15. Besides, it has announced that teas arriving up to April 4 will be catalogued for Sale No: 16.

The Tea Trade Association of Cochin has also decided to defer its Sale No: 13.

Traders in the South contend that with the closure of borders in many States and imposition of Section 144, transport of teas, especially to far away destinations in the North, East and West, and subsequent trading in market places, have become difficult.

“So, until this stress eases, our participation in the auctions, even when revived, will be nil or minimal,” a trader told BusinessLine.

Their orders have practically dried up following the stringent measures taken in many importing countries to fight Covid-19, the traders added.

Published on March 24, 2020

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