Saturday, May 09, 2009

Scanty rains hit global tea output

original from:

Scanty rainfall for the past about six months has affected tea production in the major tea exporting countries - India, Kenya and Sri Lanka. However, due to the comparatively good harvest in North India, which was 39.7 per cent more in January- February this year, Indian tea industry could somehow resist a massive slump in its overall production. The country still recorded a fall of 6.4 per cent in its overall tea production during January-February this year due to adverse weather condition.

Tea industry sources here said that dry weather condition, during the past about six months, has triggered fears of shortfall in global tea output. Global tea output shortfall has also led to rise in the prices of tea. This year, tea price is expected to rise by 10 per cent to 20 per cent, compared to the previous year.

The weather condition has led to the decline in tea production in Kenya by 12.7 per cent during the first two months of the current year, compared to the corresponding period of the previous year.

During the period, Sri Lanka has emerged as the worst hit country in terms of tea production due to the same factor. The island country witnessed a 41.3 per cent decline in its tea production during the period, said the sources.

In some parts of Assam also, production by the end of April is lower by around 40 per cent. However, rain in the past few days in the State revived the hope of a better crop in May.

Likewise, production in South India is severely hit by the rainless weather condition. Every tea growing region in Tamil Nadu, Kerala and Karnataka has reported to have been affected by the weather condition.

However, an upward trend in the sale of tea in the North Indian tea auction centres was witnessed between January and March this year, compared to the corresponding period last year. This year prices of tea have also shot up in these auction centres.

For example, sources said, the Guwahati Tea Auction Centre (GTAC) recorded sale of 23.1 million kgs of tea, against 20.9 million kgs last year. Here, per kg of tea fetched on an average, Rs 82.33, against Rs 68.09 last year.

The tea auction centre in Kolkata recorded sale of 32.5 million kgs during the period, compared to 23.3 million kgs in the corresponding period last year. The price of per kg of tea sold in the tea auction centre this year was Rs 89.13, against Rs 74.55 of last year.

The tea auction centre in Siliguri recorded sale of 16.7 million kgs of tea this year, against 15.3 million kgs last year. The price fetched by each kgs of tea sold through the auction centre was Rs 79.24, against Rs 64.52 of last year, said the sources.

Weather bulletin - 9-May-09

Thiruvananthapuram, May 8 A fresh western disturbance is forecast to affect northwest India on Saturday and Sunday, once again capping the mercury seeking to square up after the passing of a predecessor system.

The maximum temperatures on Friday were below normal by 2 to 3 degree Celsius over parts of Madhya Pradesh and northwest India.

These are expected to look up by the same levels over the next two days but that's about how high they would possibly go to, given the fresh incoming westerly system.


The highest maximum temperature of 44 degree Celsius was recorded at Sambalpur in Orissa. Temperatures were above normal in West Bengal, Sikkim, Assam, Meghalaya, coastal Orissa and south peninsular India.

India Meteorological Department (IMD) said in its update on Friday that scattered thunderstorms may get activated over the North-East during the next two days and fairly widespread thereafter.

Numerical weather prediction models suggested thunderstorm activity over Uttar Pradesh, east and adjoining central India from Monday to Wednesday.


Rain or thundershowers have been forecast at isolated places over Jammu and Kashmir, Himachal Pradesh and Uttarkhand during the same period and at a few places thereafter.

Isolated dust storm or thunderstorm is likely over Rajasthan and over the rest of the region from Sunday. South Madhya Maharashtra too, will witness unsettled weather along the same lines during the next two days. On Friday, the pre-monsoon trough line or wind discontinuity (where opposing wind regimes merge) ran down from Orissa to south Tamil Nadu through south Chhattisgarh, Telangana and Rayalaseema.

This weather feature materialises when northwesterlies from the Arabian Sea get steered round the peninsular tip and become southeasterlies from the Bay of Bengal to waft into the east coast and interior peninsula.


Moisture transported in fuels localised convection and a line of thunderstorms gets thrown up along the trough/wind discontinuity. This is how the pre-monsoon thunderstorms/squalls set themselves up along a north-south corridor over the peninsula.

Towards the east, rain or thundershowers have been forecast at isolated places over West Bengal, Sikkim, Orissa, Jharkhand and the North-East.

In the South, rain or thundershowers are likely at a few places over Kerala, coastal and south interior Karnataka, Lakshadweep, Tamil Nadu, north interior Karnataka and coastal Andhra Pradesh.


The Regional Met Centre, Chennai, said in its update that rainfall occurred at a few places over Kerala and north interior Karnataka. Isolated rainfall occurred over Tamil Nadu and south interior Karnataka. Rentachintala recorded the highest maximum temperature of 45 degree Celsius. Forecast for the next two days said that rain or thundershowers are likely to occur at a few places over Kerala and interior Karnataka. Isolated rain or thundershowers are likely to occur over Tamil Nadu, Puducherry, coastal Karnataka, coastal Andhra Pradesh and Lakshadweep. Heat wave conditions prevailed at isolated places in coastal Orissa and coastal Andhra Pradesh.


Winds are southwesterly over the Bay of Bengal and have clocked speeds of 30 km/hr at their best. Rains were traced over the open seas east of Sri Lanka. The winds are forecast to become more southerly in the Bay around May 15 carrying surplus moisture.

Over the southwest coast (Kerala), the winds were northwesterly to westerly on Friday. Satellite pictures showed loosely organised clusters of cloud just over the equator.