International Pepper Community discusses projections for pepper production, exports and imports in 2016

 Technical papers presented on pest management and safe uses of chemicals in pepper cultivation 

Mysuru, Nov: 24: Riding on sustained buoyancy in global pepper production in the current year, the International Pepper Community (IPC) discussed prospects for production, exports and imports for the year 2016 at its ongoing meeting here today.

The three-day 43rd Session of IPC, which began yesterday, also deliberated on projections of its member countries with regard to per capita consumption and carry over stock (actual for 2014, estimate for 2015 and projection for 2016), said an official of Spices Board which is organising the event.

“We made threadbare deliberations on the projections of global pepper economy. The final figures will be firmed up only after further discussions and tabulations,” he informed.

The deliberations were made at the 40th Pepper-Tech meeting, which is an important aspect of the annual IPC conclave.   

Pepper prices touched an all-time high of US$ 9.90 per kg for black pepper and US$13.57 per kg for white pepper in November 2014, which existed at this level in October this year also. The total export of pepper during 2014 was about 278,00 MT valued at US$2.30 billion while its global consumption was estimated at about 350,000 MT.

In India, exports of pepper, known as the “King of Spices”, stood at Rs 635.9 crore in Q1 of financial year 2015-16, marking an increase of 201 percent year-on-year. In terms of volume, pepper recorded a growth of 148 percent annually to 10,750 tonnes. 

Set up in 1972 by the UN Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (UNESCAP), IPC is an inter-governmental body with Brazil, India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Sri Lanka and Vietnam as its full members and Papua New Guinea as an associate. China, Cambodia, Madagascar and Miconesia are expected to join the community in near future. With its Secretariat in Jakarta, it has the mandate to promote, co-ordinate and harmonize all activities relating to the pepper economy. 

At today’s deliberations, the member countries of IPC presented technical papers on two important themes: “Controlling pest and diseases through safe uses of chemicals in integrated pests and diseases management” and “Promoting mechanization for pepper processing at pepper farmers / farmer groups in pepper growing areas.”

Some other papers which were presented by the officials of Sri Lanka’s Department of Export Agriculture at the Pepper-Tech meeting included ‘Production of Healthy pepper plants (Mrs. Swarnathilake); “An analysis on efficacy of media channels to promote value addition of pepper” (Mr. Dineth Rangoda); and “Development of support tree management system for black pepper crop” (Dr. HMPA Subasinghe). 

A discussion on the proposal to have crop survey by member countries also came up for deliberations.

Around 250 delegates from IPC member countries are attending the brainstorm meeting to deliberate on the recent advancements in pepper cultivation, production, processing, marketing, quality improvement, research and development as well as trade promotion.

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