Home » Industry » Tobacco Sales Down 21 Percent Year-On-Year

AT least 7.3 million kgs of tobacco worth $16, 2 million had been sold in the 12 days to last Friday at an average price of $2.23 per kg, latest statistics from the Tobacco Industry and Marketing Board (TIMB) have shown.

In its weekly update, TIMB said compared to last year, value and kilogrammes sold so far are 21 percent down from 9.3 mln kgs sold at a value of $26.5 mln at an average price of $2.45.

The country’s tobacco marketing season started on a low note after farmers demonstrated against the low trading prices of the golden leaf at BokaTobacco Auction Floors resulting in the temporary suspension of trading at the floors.

The crop was fetching between $50c and $3.10 per kg, triggering an angry reaction from farmers.

TIMB says cumulative auction floor sales amount to 2.5 million kgs at an average price of $1.60 per kg compared to 4.7 million kgs purchased by contractors at an average price of $2.23 per kilogram.

Same period last year comparable, about 3.7 million kg of tobacco was auctioned at an average price of $2.42 per kg while contract purchases had 6.6 million kg at an average price of $3.14 per kg.

The country expects 190 million kg of tobacco to be sold this year, compared to 216 million kg sold last year.

The decrease is attributable largely on a poor farming season which saw the rains coming late.

In the same period seasonal flue cured tobacco exports have reached 32.7 million kg valued at $216.2 million, up from 14.7 million kg worth $54 million realized during the same period last year.

For the current selling season, TIMB licensed three auction floors namely Tobacco Sales Floor (TSF), Boka Tobacco floor and Premier Tobacco Auction Floor (PTAF).

Furthermore, 20 companies were licensed as A class or auction floor buyers. Of these, five are new buyers. The board also licensed 15 contractors, with one contractor authorized to buy tobacco from its contracted farmers in Karoi, Rusape and Mvurwi. – FinX

Source : Financial Gazette