Total Auction offerings remained around last and totalled 6.9 M/kgs. Low Grown Large Leaf teas continued to meet with good demand, whilst High & Mid Grown Small Leaf types met with less demand and consequently, a fair weight of tea remained unsold.
Ex-Estate offerings totalled 0.9 M/kgs. Overall, quality of teas on offer showed no significant change, whilst there was significantly less demand, particularly for teas in the Below Best and Plainer categories. Prices for CTC teas continued to fall further, commensurate with the higher volumes and declining prices currently witnessed at the Mombasa Tea Auctions.
Best Western BOP's declined Rs. 20-40/- per kg and more following quality. The corresponding BOPF - a small range of teas were firm with select invoices appreciating following special inquiry, whilst the others were Rs. 20/- per kg lower. In the Below Best category, BOP's declined Rs. 40-50/- per kg, whilst the corresponding BOPF declined Rs. 20/- per kg on average. Plainer Neat Leaf BOP's declined Rs. 10-20/- per kg, whilst the others were difficult of sale. The corresponding BOPF declined up to Rs. 40/- per kg. Nuwara Eliyas were barely steady and continued to attract limited interest. Udapussellawas mostly unsellable following poor quality. Uva - few select BOP's maintained, whilst the others declined Rs. 20-30/- per kg and more. Corresponding BOPF had on offer few select invoices that were substantially dearer following special inquiry, whilst the majority declined Rs. 20-40/- per kg. High & Mid Grown CTC's continued to weaken further by Rs. 20-30/- per kg for most teas on offer, whilst the Low Grown types were firm and up to Rs. 20/- per kg lower. Downward pressure on prices for liquoring Small Leaf teas continued at the Auctions in the backdrop of the greater availability at the Mombasa Auctions and the declining prices. In this scenario, producers are cautioned of the importance of producing a good quality product, as a surfeit of poor quality teas would further depress prices.
Low Growns comprised of 3.15 M/kgs in the Leafy/Tippy catalogues, a similar quantity to last week. In the Leafy catalogue, there was selective demand with the better PEK/PEK1's maintaining. Others were marginally easier. Best OP1/BOP1's were firm to dearer. Others were irregular. Best OP/OPA's maintained, whilst others eased Rs. 20/- per kg. In the Tippy catalogue, there was improved demand. Select Best FBOP's were firm to dearer. Others appreciated. FF1's in general dearer. Tippy teas too met with good demand. There was good demand from shippers to CIS, Libya, Iraq, Saudi Arabia, Dubai and Turkey this week.