National, Front Page

Record tea output despite pandemic

Published : 20 Jan 2022 10:41 PM

Tea production in the country witnessed a record high of 9.65 crore kg in 2021 despite the Covid-19 pandemic.

The production increased by 1.01 crore kg in the last year over that in the previous year, according to the Tea Board's data.

Earlier, Bangladesh  recorded high tea production of 9.61 crore kg in 167 large and small tea estates in 2019.

However, production declined to 8.64 crore kg in 2020.

Officials of state-run Bangladesh Tea Board  said the volume of tea production is consistently increasing every month, thanks to favorable weather since the beginning of the last year and various initiatives taken by the government.

They said expansion of tea cultivation, increasing investment, use of new technologies and  the Tea Board's initiatives play a key role behind the rise in production.

If production continues at its present rate due to favourable weather conditions last year, yields will be better than that of the previous season, they said.

Major Gen Ashraful Islam, chairman of Bangladesh Tea Board, said, "Bangladesh posts new records in tea production every year."

Despite the covid situation, the overall activities of all the tea gardens in the country were normal last year under the direction of the Prime Minister, he mentioned.

"This is evident from the continuity of production even in the pandemic, and the potential of the tea industry has greatly increased," he added.

He said tea growers in the north have produced 41 percent more tea this time as they have received hands-on training in tea cultivation and modern technology through the 'Camellia Open Sky School'.

According to the Tea Board's data, commercial tea cultivation in the region began in 1854 with the Malnicherra Tea Estate in Sylhet.

The industry has come a long way since then, with the government now aiming production to reach 14 crore Kg of tea annually by 2025. 

There are 167 tea gardens in Chattogram, Sylhet, Habiganj, Moulvibazar and Panchagarh.

Also, more than 5,000 small farmers in Bandarban and the northern part of the country are engaged in tea cultivation.

More than 3 lakh workers are employed in this sector all over Bangladesh.