Sri Lanka’s Malwatte Valley Plantations ups spice, fruit crop

May 28, 2013 (LBO) – Sri Lanka’s Malwatte Valley Plantations Plc, a tea and rubber growing company said it was expanding commercial spice and fruit cultivation. . Chairman Willem Bogtstra told shareholders in an annual review that the firm is focusing on pepper, cardamoms, rambutan, avocado, mango and mandarin, using currently uncultivated land.

“During the review period from 2011 to 2012 we have increased pepper cultivation and our income from the mature pepper area has increased by 50 percent,” he said

“Under the diversification programme the Company, expects to further expand cultivation of mandarin, avocado, cardamom and rambutan.

“The pepper cultivation programme has been undertaken in Unugalla and Uva Ketawella Estates. The Company has now decided to expand the project by a further 250,000 vines.”

Malwatte Valley’s main crops are tea and rubber. In 2012, the firm said it had earned revenues of 2.9 billion rupees from tea and gross profits of 97 million rupees and 562 million rupees in revenues and profits of 257 million rupees from rubber.

Labour costs have since risen under a collective agreement.