EghtesadOnline: A total of 133,000 tons of fresh tea leaves have been harvested in Iran in the current fiscal year (started March 20, 2020), registering close to a 5% increase compared with last year, according to the head of Iran Tea Organization.
"A total of 30,000 tons of processed tea were derived from this year’s yields,” Habibollah Jahansaz was quoted as saying by ILNA, adding that this figure also shows a 5% year-on-year rise.
This year’s harvest, he added, was worth 5.13 trillion rials ($19.73 million).
The official noted that production has increased because of favorable weather conditions, government support in granting cheap loans and a rise in guaranteed purchase prices.
Every year, the government buys strategic crops, including tea, wheat, sugarbeet, barley, cotton boll and oilseeds, from local farmers at guaranteed prices to control prices in the domestic market and fill its strategic reserves.
Last year’s tea harvest season ended in October 2019 and the government purchased 126,753 tons of green tea leaves from local farmers for 3.43 trillion rials ($13 million).
“About 28,519 tons of processed tea were derived from this amount of purchases, showing an 11% rise compared with the similar period of last year,” Jahansaz said.
The crop undergoes three harvests a year: the spring harvest that starts in late April, the second in summer begins early June and the last one in autumn starts late September.
Tea is cultivated in Iran’s northern provinces of Gilan and Mazandaran where 50,000 families earn their living from tea farming on more than 25,000 hectares.
Jahansaz said based on the latest figures, Iran’s domestic demand for tea stands at around 100,000 tons per year.
Iran mainly imports tea from India and Sir Lanka. Turkey, Germany, China, Japan, Vietnam, Kenya and Poland are other exporters of the product to the country.
Iranian tea is exported as well and its main destinations are India, Uzbekistan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Canada, Australia, Spain, the Czech Republic and Georgia.