Tea prices dipped further at this week’s Mombasa auction remaining below the minimum reserve price for the third week running amid reduced demand for the commodity.
At the auction, a kilo averaged USD2.28(KES 279.64), four cents down from USD2.32(KES 284.55) in the previous week.
The Ministry of Agriculture set USD2.43 (Sh294) as the minimum tea price for a kilo for all the Kenya Tea Development Agency (KTDA) teas last year to safeguard farmers’ earnings.
The low prices saw volumes traded decline by 33,821 kilos compared to the previous auction.
“There was a reduced demand in most categories on offer with prices irregular following quality for the 221,580 packages (14.8million kilos) available for sale. 145,240 packages (9.6 million kilos) were sold with 34.45% of packages remaining unsold,” the East African Tea Trade Association (EATTA) managing director Edward Mudibo.
During the week, Pakistan Packers, Bazaar, and Afghanistan lent strong support to Yemen and other Middle Eastern countries, maintaining good inquiry. Kazakhstan, other CIS states and the UK were more selective, while Sudan, Egyptian Packers and Iran reduced activity.
Further, Russia was less active, while Local Packers maintained interest. Somalia maintained activity at the lower end of the market.