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Thu, 21 Nov 2019

Northeast Today

Tea Board of India to Take Time to Fix Minimum Price

Tea Board of India to Take Time to Fix Minimum Price
November 09
14:55 2019

NET Bureau

The Assam government requested the Tea Board of India to fix the minimum price for green leaves about two months back, but the board is yet to arrive at a consensus on the issue.

“The recent meetings of the Tea Board witnessed differences of opinion among various stakeholders to fix the minimum price. So, the board’s attempts to fix the minimum price of green leaves have failed,” a source in the Tea Board said.

The Tea Board has now decided to constitute a committee to discuss the issue threadbare. The committee will comprise representatives from different segments of the tea industry.

“It will take time to fix the minimum price for green leaves being produced by small tea growers. Since the minimum price will be fixed for all the tea-producing States, the Tea Board now wants the prevalent prices at which green leaf is being bought,” the source said.

Sources said the fixing of minimum price for green leaf can be done only through wide-ranging stakeholder consultations and not unilaterally.

On September 20, State Industries & Commerce Minister Chandra Mohan Patowary had asserted that small tea growers would receive a major boost in their income with the Tea Board of India agreed to fix minimum support price for green leaf.

The greatest challenge being faced by small tea growers is that the prices they get for green leaf is never sufficient to meet the cost of production, threatening their income security and plunging them into chronic indebtedness. On an average, the growers get only Rs 9 and Rs 7 in Bengal and Tamil Nadu/Kerala whereas the cost of production is Rs 15.50 and Rs 18.50 respectively. In Assam, farmers receive only Rs 14 whereas the cost of production is Rs 18.50.

Source: The Sentinel

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