Drought cuts March tea crop by 22%

Wednesday, 7 May 2014 00:51 -     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

Sri Lanka’s tea output fell for the second straight month in March, down 21.9% from a year earlier, data from the State-run Tea Board showed on Tuesday, which officials attributed to an extended drought condition. Output of Sri Lanka’s top agricultural export commodity also fell 9.9% in the first quarter of this year compared with the same period last year. The country’s annual tea production rose 4.2% last year to a record high of 340.2 million kg, surpassing its previous all-time peak of 331.4 million kg in 2010. Earnings also hit a record of $ 1.54 billion last year, surpassing the previous high of $ 1.48 billion in 2011. Tea is one of the main foreign currency earners for the country’s $ 67 billion economy.