Bad weather hits Lanka’s premium teas

18 February 2013 03:23 am - 0     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

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The buyers of premium Dimbula teas may be disappointed, as the much awaited seasonal teas have run into bad weather which could hinder the production, a Colombo based tea broker said.

A brief report by the tea broking arm of the John Keells PLC noted that cold dry spells which herald the Dimbula quality season has been replaced with wet and overcast conditions. Rainfall has been falling on the Western slopes, since beginning of last week. “The North East monsoon has been extremely active this season, after a brief lull, heavy rainfall has been recorded once again in the Northern and Eastern Sectors of the Island. The intensity of the rainfall could be one of the reasons for the spill over to the Western Sector.”

“Despite the said, set back, we are hoping that, we could still have a delayed and a shortened season provided there is a change in the weather. Dimbula produces some of its best teas from January through March and with half of the season behind us, the chances of seeing teas with seasonal character would be limited to just a few,” the report noted.

Dimbula produces some of its best teas in the January-March period.

However as the report stressed, the brighter side of the current wet weather is that it could boost crop intakes in the first quarter which is one of the lowest production quarters in the year. “All three elevations have reported rainfall over the week. Although current intakes are moderate to low, we could see production rise in February with some plantations making use of the current weather to fertilize tea fields,” the report noted.

Dimbula tea, undoubtedly the most wellknown name associated with Ceylon tea, is produced at elevations of 3,500 to 5, 000 feet above sea level. The monsoon rains and the cold-dry weather of the western slopes of the mountains help to produce a range of teas, from full bodied to light and delicate.
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