Iran challenges tea farmers to increase production
Iranian Ambassodar to the county Dr Jafar Barmaki addressing the media after making an intensive tour of the Kangaita tea farm where orthodox tea is produced and procrssesed for export . To his left is the KTDA's chairman of the marketing Mithamo wa Susana and the Kirinyaga Central MP .Munene Wambugu to the right.
The Iranian Government has challenged tea farmers in Kirinyaga County to increase production of orthodox tea whose demand is high .
According to its Ambassador to the country Dr Jafar Barmaki, the country is only able to supply 56 per cent of the commodity .
“Demand for orthodox tea from Kirinyaga County is so high in my country but farmers are only to supply 56 per cent leaving a huge deficit and am challenging them to double the amount since there is ready market for the commodity ,”he said.
Briefing the media after an extensive tour of the Kangaita tea farm where the crop is grown, harvested and processed , the Envoy said he had been tasked by his country to come on the ground and establish various facts about the produce.
He said the move was after a delegation from the KTDA led by the Chairman of the marketing committee Mithamo wa Susana visited his country on a fact finding mission on how the citizens viewed the beverage.
Barmaki said after the visit he was directed by his government to visit the source of the orthodox tea his kinsmen so much desired to take before more orders of the commodity could be made.
Accompanied by the Kirinyaga Central MP Munene Wambugu where the Kangaita tea factory which processes the commodity , Barmaki said he was satisfied beyond any reasonable doubt the product measured up to the expectations of his country.
Wambugu on the other hand assured Iran that measures and mechanisms were already in place to motivate the farmers to increase production while extra processing lines for the commodity were being installed.
It emerged as at July last year Kenya had exported to Iran orthodox tea worth Sh 10m US Dollars .
Wasusana said the cost of orthodox tea was always a Dollar higher than the CTC one hence the need to increase productivity which later translates to more income to the farmer.