The recent drought negatively impacted the production of Rooibos. As a result, the demand for Rooibos exceeded supply, and Rooibos prices increased. This influenced the domestic market where price sensitivity decreased the demand for Rooibos by 30% over the past three years. During the same period, the demand for Rooibos in Japan increased by 100%.
By the end of November 2018, the 2019 harvest was estimated to be some 17 000 tonnes. However, good rains during December changed this picture.
Says Gerda de Wet, Rooibos Ltd’s Communication Manager, “The rain at the end of last year increased the estimated yield to 19 500 tonnes currently. This is on par with some of the biggest harvests of the past. This volume can be attributed mainly to the increase in the number of plantations. The estimated demand for 2019 amounts to 16 000 tonnes, producing a surplus of 20%.”
This surplus will benefit the industry as it will allow Rooibos Ltd to again accumulate the reserves that have been exhausted by the recent drought. Rooibos Ltd’s policy is to keep Rooibos equal to one year’s sales in stock in order to ensure sustainable supply and price stability.
Depending on the temperature, Rooibos producers start their harvesting season in January and continue till the end of April. Rooibos is a highly versatile product. Among others, it is used as an extract in skincare products and as an ingredient in food and drinks.
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MyCederberg.com: Verwagtings vir 2019 rooibos-oeste darem meer positief