EDB plans to increase cinnamon production

Thursday, 21 February 2013 00:23 -     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

    Sri Lanka’s Department of Export Agriculture pans to take measures to step up the production of cinnamon in the country to increases cinnamon exports. Sri Lanka plans to increase the cinnamon exports to a target of US$ 1 billion by 2015, the Sri Lanka Economic Development Board (EDB) says.

Accordingly, cinnamon production facilities are expected to be established in the cinnamon cultivation areas in the country. Initially a program will commence in the Deniyaya Panilkanda area, the Department said.

According to the EDB, Sri Lanka produces 80% of cinnamon demand in the world market and exports 85% of country’s annual cinnamon production, mostly to the USA and Mexico. Sri Lanka annually produces 16,000 metric tons of cinnamon in about 31,000 hectares of land. Cinnamon trade is the livelihood for 260,000 families in the country. In 2011 Sri Lanka exported 121 million US dollars’ worth of cinnamon around 40 countries.

Mexico is the largest buyer, purchasing 51% of cinnamon exports, followed by the US. EDB hopes to increase industry earnings to 1 billion US dollars by 2020. However, cassia, which is a cheaper substitute, is becoming a threat and Sri Lanka needs to address this challenge urgently. Cinnamon is also the second Sri Lankan product to be officially branded with it being launched globally in 2011.