IPC and Indonesia Tea Board met to discuss the potential of intercropping Pepper with Tea

 ipc  19/03/2015  804
Bandung, 12/02/2015: Mr. WDL Gunaratne, Executive Director of IPC and Mr. Nur Haryanto, Information Officer of IPC attended a meeting organized by the Indonesian Tea Board in Bandung on 12th February 2015. The meeting was attended by Mr. Rachmat Badrudin, Chairman of Indonesia Tea Board, Mr. W.D.L. Gunaratne, ED of IPC, Mrs. Sofiati Mukadi, Vice Chair, Indonesia Spice Council, representative from Directorate General of Estate Crops, Ministry of Agriculture, Estate Crops Office of West Java Province, Spice Research Institute of Indonesia (BALITTRO) and Board of Directors, PT KABEPE CHAKRA, which is operating a number of Tea Plantations, mainly in West Java.

The meeting is aimed at discussing the potential and prospect of inter cropping Pepper with Tea at the suitable and selected Tea Plantations in Indonesia. This issue was raised by the participants following the paper presentation made by Mr. Gunaratne on World Pepper Scenario during the Spice Seminar organized by the Indonesia Spice Council in Bandung in the month of November 2014.

Mr. Rachmat Badruin, the Chairman of the Indonesia Tea Board at the meeting reviewed the current situation of the Tea production and trade and the programmes being implemented to support the tea industry. He also informed about the current situation of the world tea industry and the low prices of tea in the world market in the last few years which have adversely affected on the export earning of the producing countries, particularly for Indonesia. Mr. Badruddin invited and requested the IPC to share the information, technology and inputs on the idea in intercropping Pepper with Tea which has been reported a successful programme adopted by Sri Lanka and India.

Mr. Rachmat Badrodin (Chairmann of Tea Board), Dr. Dyah Manohara (Sr. Scientist of BALITTRO),
Mrs. Sofiati M (Vice Chair of Indonesia Spice Council), Mr. Gunaratne (ED of IPC)
and o ther participants of the Meeting held in Bandung

Mr. Gunaratne, ED of IPC in his presentation briefly informed about the intercropping Pepper with Tea in Sri Lanka, which was initiated sometimes back in 1998 starting with three pilot projects in selected area. This is aimed at providing the farmers opportunity to earn from other crop if the tea prices come down and optimize then resource utilization. He further highlighted a number of factors to be considered to make the intercropping Tea with Pepper a successful venture.

Mr. Gunaratne also presented an overview of the world pepper production and trade and the current development of the high pepper prices with black pepper touched at around US$ 9 and white pepper is at around US$ 12-13 and informed the efforts undertaken by the IPC and member countries through some generic promotion programmed, including taking exporters delegation to the emerging market, promotion programmed to increase the domestic consumption of pepper in the producing countries through Pepper Day programme etc.

The meeting decided that the Tea Board will establish few demonstration plat at the selected suitable Tea plantations for Intercropping Tea with Pepper. The Meeting also requested the support from Balittro and IPC in undertaking the plan of intercropping successfully.