Cinnamon export earnings to target $1bn by 2020

25 October 2012 03:29 am - 6     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

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Sri Lanka's sole export market monopoly commodity, cinnamon, aspires to generate value added export earnings of US$ 1 billion by 2020, The Spice Council (TSC) Chairman Sarada De Silva stated.

“Ceylon Cinnamon that has roots dating back to 1500 B.C., is a key underutilized potential that can facilitate export revenue earnings in the years to come,” United Nations Industrial Development Organisation (UNIDO) Regional Director Ayumi Fujino said.

With an annual turnover of US$ 80 million, the industry caters to over 90% of the world's cinnamon market.

Currently, Sri Lanka's cinnamon industry is faced with immense challenges that deter prolonged global market penetration.

Despite global prices doubling over the last three years, high cost of production, lower volumes and poor quality of food and safety standards, have led to the deterioration of market share to the synthetic substitute cassia cinnamon.

An acute shortage of trained labour, coupled with the social stigma surrounding the cinnamon industry, hinders progression in the export markets.

A UN report estimates that only 65% of cinnamon capacity is being processed, while the industry lacks over 35,000 skilled workers to carry out harvesting and production activities.

“Cinnamon is grown, harvested, processed, value added and exported entirely by the private sector. The industry supports over 350,000 families in excess of five districts. However, we are faced with a sheer corrosion of quality in products that stems through the production chain from the cinnamon peeler,” De Silva added.

Addressing these issues, a three-year long public-private partnership (PPP) was signed by TSC, several government authorities and the UN representative bodies- the UNIDO and the World Trade Organisation (WTO)- with a project finance of US$ 1.43 million.

The main outcome of the Enhancing the Compliance, Productive Capacities and Competitiveness of the Cinnamon Value Chain in Sri Lanka project will be the establishment of a nationally and internationally accredited training center to enhance the manufacturing and production skills of the cinnamon processors and producers, while further improving food safety, hygiene and quality compliance standards of the value chain.

External financial and technical support will amount to US$ 830,000- the majority of which is provided by the WTO- with several governmental bodies imparting the remaining funds.

Additionally, the PPP aims to obtain GI protection for the Pure Ceylon Cinnamon mark in international markets. This aims to facilitate market differentiation and promotion of Ceylon Cinnamon from its artificial counterpart, cassia.

“The project aims to support the cinnamon industry stakeholders to enhance the competitiveness of their value chain, restrain market deprivation and support the weak value added segment,” UNIDO Industrial Development Officer and Project Manager Ali Badarne stated.
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  Comments - 6

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  • Harry Friday, 26 October 2012 09:53 AM

    The well learned reseachers of the cinnamon industry should think about finding new methods and iquipmens for making cinnamon. We are still using the same old types equipments that have been using from the year 1500. To - day the world is marching forward with advance Technology.

    Mal Abeygunawardena Friday, 26 October 2012 01:42 PM

    Harry I agree with you totally.

    All the Cinnamon growers whenever they meet they always talk about the lack of skilled labour, 60% of the Cinnamon is not harvested due to all sorts of reasons and so on. But nobody has taken any action to solve these problems they are facing.

    All we do is address it to the government and tha'ts all that happens and then blame the government for it. Why can't the cinnamon growers themselves get together, take the initiative invest some money and do some research to solve their problems instead of talking about them.

    Everyone is expecting the government to do the research, that's not the way it should be ... all cinnamon growers should do their own research and find solutions to their day to day problems. Pool the resources and work as a team.
    continued

    Mal Abeygunawardena Friday, 26 October 2012 01:45 PM

    Continued

    5 years back I remember the same spice council headed by Mr. Sarada de Silva addressing the same problems and it looks like these problems are still not solved. I think you guys need to wake up and go and see what is happening in Dissanayaka Walauwa cinnamon peeling center ... how they peel cinnamon.

    I myself discovered this new method of peeling and addressed it to them and the then minister of agriculture Hon. Hemakumar Nanayakkara. Who advised the meeting (spice council meeting) of the new technique and also introduced me to the attendees as the man who found this new method ,

    Mal Abeygunawardena Friday, 26 October 2012 01:48 PM

    The Minister officiallly requested the cinnamon research institue in Matale and matara areas to do further research into this new technique and confirm whether it is possible to utilise the method without altering the goodness of the bark. It took them more than 3 years and has now requested the public to use this simple method to cut down labour cost with improved goodness of peeled bark.

    I am doing further research to improve the peeling method using the same technique without bothering the government as they got enough things to do for us!

    Mal Abeygunawardena Friday, 26 October 2012 01:49 PM

    The new technique will ensure minimum handling thus improving food safety and hygiene. You can verify all of the above if you contact Mr. Hemakumar Nanayakkara.

    Thank you for giving me this opportunity to write a few words. One last thing I agree Sri Lanka has the best Cinnamon in the world, she also has the best Pepper in the world and also the best Vanilla in the world too! This has not been proven yet. !In Sri Lanka we have so many best in the world stuff!!

    cinnamon drinker Thursday, 25 October 2012 07:12 PM

    Sri Lanka cinnamon has the best cinnamon flavour in the world.
    Grow more and give the world SriLanka cinnamon.


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