Demand for the country’s tobacco in line with international trade requirements has this year declined by five percent to 150 million kilogrammes (kg) from the previous year’s 158 million kg, according to Tobacco Control Commission (TCC).
But TCC acting chief executive officer David Luka in an interview on Monday ahead of the marketing season which starts mid-next month said they are yet to establish how much tobacco has been produced.
“Next week a team of buyers, TCC officials and other players in the tobacco industry will be going in the fields to establish what is there and later consolidate that data,” he said.
Luka said the tobacco regulatory body has introduced a new system of registration to manage output.
“We have started giving quotas to farmers other than the farmers giving us quotas in line with the demand that is there,” he said.
In the previous tobacco marketing season, the leaf’s supply glut was one of the key challenges that marred the marketing season.
Traditionally, the tobacco marketing season runs for 25 weeks, but last season, it was extended by 11 weeks due to oversupply of leaf by 20 million kg. n