India dust tea rises on demand; CTC drops on quality

MUMBAI, Sept 16 (Reuters) - Dust tea prices in India, the world's second biggest producer of tea, rose at this week's auction on good demand from packet tea manufacturers, while CTC fell due to poor quality leaf supply, dealers and industry officials said on Friday.

Price of CTC (crush-tear-curl) tea was at 124.85 rupees per kg, 1.43 percent lower than 126.66 rupees at the previous weekly auction.
Dust tea rose 0.63 percent to 123.01 rupees per kg from 122.24 rupees at the previous auction.
"Quality of CTC was poor compared to the arrivals in the previous auction. That's why it fetched lower prices," said Kalyan Sundaram, secretary, Calcutta Tea Traders Association. "Packet tea makers were actively buying dust tea."
Tea exports by India could fall nearly 7 percent in 2011 to 180-185 million kgs partly due to payments problems with Iran and unrest in the Middle East, a senior industry official said on Sept. 14
India is the world's second biggest producer of tea after China. It exports CTC tea mainly to Egypt, Pakistan and the UK, and the premium orthodox variety to Iraq, Iran and Russia.
The country's tea production in July rose 8.2 percent to 133.27 million kgs, on conducive weather, while exports fell 8 percent to 15.26 million kgs due to poor demand from the Middle East, the Tea Board said on Sept. 8.
Prices in the latest auction (Sept 13-15)

(Quantity in kg; price in rupees per kg) ----------------------------------------------------------
Variety Offered quantity Sold quantity Avg Price ----------------------------------------------------------
CTC Leaf 2997127 2219571 124.85
Dust tea 1568846 1163630 123.01
Prices in the last auction (Sept 6-8)
CTC Leaf 2917786 2369358 126.66
Dust tea 1614557 1194400 122.24
Source: Calcutta Tea Traders' Association (Reporting by Rajendra Jadhav; Editing by Sunil Nair)

Source: Reuters