Tobacco sales tops 246.1 million kg

HARARE – As at day 94 on Tuesday, over 246 million kilogrammes of tobacco worth $720.3 million had been sold by farmers since the opening of the season, a growth of 33 percent compared to the same period last year where the sales value stood at $540.9 million.

Tobacco sold averaged $2.93 per kg which compares less favourable to an average price of  average price of $2.97 in the same period last year.

According to the Tobacco Industry and Marketing Board (TIMB), the volumes performance has since surpassed the previous millennium high of 236.9kgs surpassed on day 83 of the current season.

 TIMB statistics also show that the bulk of the crop has been sold through the contract floors with 210.5 million kilogrammes sold through contract while 35.6 million kilogrammes went under the hammer at the auction floors.

Contractors Northern Tobacco was the highest volume driver among contractors and has the highest average price at $3.25. The contractor contributed 15 percent of a total of $622.8 million harnessed by contractors.

Comparably, a total of $97.6 million was sold through the auction floors.

In terms of contribution, 85.4 percent of the sales volumes went through as contracts sales while the difference of 14.6% was expressed through auctions.

Figures released by the TIMB show that there has been an increase in the number of bales rejected in comparison to last year.

So far 162,967 bales have been rejected while 142,729 were rejected during the same period last year, an increase of 14 percent.

TIMB previously highlighted that the bales are usually rejected for being overweight or underweight, too wet or too dry, mouldy, mixed hands or when farmers refused to sell the tobacco for personal reasons.

Overall the improved performance has been attributed to factors such as the surge in volumes which countered the impact of a marginal decline in average prices which was 1.35 percent lower than last year.

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