Sri Lanka tea output recovers in April

May 25, 2009 (LBO)- Sri Lanka’s total tea production in April 2009 shows an increase compared with the same month a year ago, indicating the crop is recovering from the effects of severe drought earlier this year. The Sri Lanka Tea Board said total tea production in April was 29.2 million kilos, up 4.8 percent from 27.8 million kilos in April 2008.

The crop from all three elevations increased during the month as plantations got rain after a longer-than-usual drought earlier in the year.

However, the tea board said, the cumulative production for the January-April 2009 period was still far below last year.

The production in the first four months of the year was 78.7 million kilos, 29.3 percent below the 111.3 million kilos made in the same 2008 period.

The island’s tea output fell sharply earlier this year owing to the effects of drought and efforts to curtail production when the market crashed towards the end of last year.

Prices have since recovered although they are below the record highs seen during the commodities boom last year.