NAIROBI (Xinhua) --
An estimated 560,000 smallholder tea growers in Kenya
will this year earn an estimated at 830 million U.S. dollars in
revenues, up from 630 million dollars in 2015 amid stability in the
global commodities market and favorable weather that boosted
Briefing on this year’s revenues for tea
farmers on Tuesday, officials said Kenya outshone its rivals in
Africa and Asia to fetch the highest revenue from the cash crop in
the global market.
"Improved earnings for tea farmers this year was occasioned by
favorable exchange rates and improved weather condition," Kenya Tea
Development Agency (KTDA) CEO Lerionka Tiampati.
He revealed the total volume of green leaf produced by
smallholders this year reached 1.23 billion kilograms compared to
1.04 billion kilograms last year.
The demand for Kenyan tea in both traditional and new markets in
the West, Asia and Middle East increased slightly this year.
Tiampati said that value addition, improved crop husbandry and
marketing is key to boost the competitiveness of Kenyan tea in the
"We have adopted strategic measures like energy efficiency and
business diversification to enhance performance of the tea sector,"
Tiampati said, adding that the majority of tea factories are now
using cleaner fuels like briquettes to limit their carbon footprint.
"We have encouraged tea factories to invest in cost management
and efficiency enhancement initiatives. Several tea factories have
invested in small hydro power stations to lower energy costs and
generate additional revenue from sale of power to the national
grid," said Tiampati.
He disclosed the Kenyan tea agency has partnered with private
sector arm of the World Bank, International Finance Corporation to
enhance tea production through improved crop husbandry.