8 September 2011
The South African Rooibos Council on Wednesday said there was an increased demand for the caffeine-free tea overseas which was bound to boost the industry.
Rooibos harvests declined over the past few years along the Cape’s West Coast.
Smaller crops were planted and adverse weather conditions had a negative effect on production.
The council’s Dawie de Villiers said demand was now increasing internationally.
“The rooibos crop is consumed mostly locally and the balance of it goes into the export – that’s roughly about 50% – while a chunk of that goes into the Germany market, which accounted for about 40%,” he said.
De Villiers added that farmers were getting slightly for more for their crops.
“Farmers have been in an over-supply situation for three years. But the cycle is now changing as a result of lower plantings, and also weather conditions. The prices are on the upward curve at the moment.”