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ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka’s tea prices went up despite the low volumes at the auction on March 02 followed by rupee appreciation, brokers said.

Prices of all High, Medium and Low Growns saw an increase during the auction.

Total auction volumes were significantly lower to the preceding 2 weeks and totalled 4.5 M/Kgs. There was good general demand, Firbes and Walker Tea brokers said in a report.

The weekly sale average increased from 1460.86 rupees to 1471.03 rupees from a week ago, according to data.

High Growns

The High Grown sale average was up by 10.32 rupees to 1,440.05 from 1429.73 rupees last week, Ceylon Tea Brokers said.

PEK was up by 50 rupees while PEK1 and FBOP/FF1’s were down by 50- 100 rupees per kilogram.

“Ex-Estate offerings totalling 0.65 M/Kgs witnessed improved demand and a firm to dearer trend in prices, particularly for the limited selection of useful liquoring teas from the Western Planting Districts” Forbes and Walker tea report said.

“An encouraging feature was the strong demand displayed for teas at the lower end of the market notwithstanding the strengthening of the Sri Lankan Rupee against the US Dollar (lowest rupee value against the USD since 4 May 2022).”

Well-made OP/OPA’s were firm on last, whilst teas at the lower end were irregularly dearer.

Low Growns

In Low Grown Teas, both FBOP1, FBOP and BOP were down by 50 rupees while BOPF was up by 40 rupees.

The Low Growns sale average however, was up 11.87 rupees to 1526.93 rupees last week.

Low Growns comprised of two million kilograms.

Leafy and Semi Leafy catalogues met with fair demand, whilst the Small Leaf categories continued to decline. Shippers to Russia, Iraq and Türkiye were active, whilst shippers to Iran were selective.

In Low Growns Select Best PEK/PEK1s maintained, whilst Best and Below Best varieties were down.

A few select Best OPs were firm, whilst Best and Below Best varieties were down.

Medium Growns

Medium Grown PEK was up by 50 rupees while PEK1 and FBOP fell 50-100 rupees.

The Medium Growns sale average was up by 14.07 rupees to 1263.25 rupees last week.

In BOP large Leaf types were up, whilst the others were steady.

Well-made OP/OPA’s were steady, whilst teas at the lower end were marginally up.

(Colombo/Mar 05/2023)

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