Production of Non-Estate Tea Sector in Assam
Ranjit Kumar Gam1, Jugal Kumar Deka2

1Ranjit Kumar Gam*, Assistant Professor, Department of Economics, Sibsagar College, Sibsagar, India.
2Jugal Kumar Deka, PhD Scholar, OKD Institute of Social Change and Development, Guwahati, India.
Manuscript received on December 19, 2019. | Revised Manuscript received on December 20, 2019. | Manuscript published on January 10, 2020. | PP: 658-663 | Volume-9 Issue-3, January 2020. | Retrieval Number: C8321019320/2020©BEIESP | DOI: 10.35940/ijitee.C8321.019320
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Abstract: The state of Assam is well known for tea production and among all the tea producing states in India it alone contributes more than 50% of total tea production. Production of tea includes agricultural operations as well as processing and manufacturing and hence it can be placed in both agriculture and industry. Tea has immense potential in generating income and employment. Though the history of Assam Tea is more than 180 years old, the participation of local people in this sector was very limited. Earlier establishment of a tea garden was thought to be a capitalist activity requiring massive investment. It is only in the late 1980s, local Assamese people came to know that tea plantation can be profitably undertaken even in small scale with low capital investment. This paved the way for the educated unemployed youth of Assam to undertake tea plantation in small scale. Since then tea plantation in small scale in Assam grew gradually complementing estate gardens by supplying green tea leaves. In the late 1990s due to various constraints, the estate sector tea production in Assam experienced low productivity with declining tea acreage. This has further pushed the rapid growth of small tea growers. The estate gardens of Assam also became more dependent in procuring green tea leaves from the tea smallholding by offering high price. During the period 1996-98 small tea growers of the state received as high as Rs. 22/- per kg of green leaves which did not last very long. Due to various reasons price of produce of small tea growers has fallen sharply after the year 2000. Since then though acreage and productivity of small tea growers shows continuous growth, the growers often complain about low price for their produce. In this paper an attempt has been made to analyse the trend of tea acreage, production and price received in the non-estate sector tea production in Assam. 
Keywords: Tea, Estate Sector, Agricultural Operations Non-Estate Sector, Productivity, Price, Small tea Growers.
Scope of the Article: Agricultural Informatics and Communication