September 4, 2018 / 9:48 AM / in 8 months

India's July tea output drops 6.7 pct on lower rains-Board

MUMBAI, Sept 4 (Reuters) - India’s tea production fell 6.7 percent in July from a year ago to 151.38 million kgs as plucking fell in the top two producing states due to lower rainfall, the state-run Tea Board said on Tuesday.

The country’s tea output in the first seven months of 2018 fell 5 percent from a year ago to 583.84 million kg, it said.

“Lower rainfall in Assam hit productivity. We lost crop in southern states as well,” said Azam Monem, chairman of Indian Tea Association, adding “production in 2018 would be lower than last year.”

Assam, the country’s top tea producing state, and second biggest producer West Bengal have received about 20 percent lower-than-normal rainfall in the current monsoon season that started on June 1, data compiled by India Meteorological Department showed.

India, the world’s second-biggest tea producer, exports CTC (crush-tear-curl) grade mainly to Egypt, Pakistan and the United Kingdom, and the orthodox variety to Iraq, Iran and Russia. (Reporting by Rajendra Jadhav; Editing by Sunil Nair)

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