Rubber Board urges growers to raise profit potential through sheet production

Consumption of sheet rubber rose by 8.34% and 5.37% in 2022-23 and 2023-24 respectively. Sheet rubber accounts for 41.6% of the overall domestic consumption

Updated - July 10, 2024 11:19 pm IST

Published - July 10, 2024 08:36 pm IST - KOTTAYAM

Taking note of the growing demand for domestically produced Ribbed Smoked Sheets (RSS grades), the Rubber Board has urged growers to concentrate more on sheet processing than selling latex.

In a statement here recently, M. Vasanthagesan, Executive Director of the Rubber Board, noted that consumption of sheet rubber rose by 8.34% and 5.37% in 2022-23 and 2023-24 respectively. Sheet rubber accounted for 41.6% of the overall domestic consumption while that of the latex concentrates was just 7.7%.

According to him, growers are currently securing 90-95% of the terminal market share due to sheet making. “By processing sheet rubber, they can earn higher profits in the current market scenario. For instance, the price of RSS 1X grade currently ranges from ₹245 to ₹250 a kg, significantly higher than the prices of other RSS grades. This underscores the potential for profits in focussing on RSS grades,’’ he said.

Rise in area

As per official estimates, the total area under rubber plantation has increased to 8,89,000 hectares from 8,50,000 ha last year. The tappable area has risen by 8,500 ha. The projected production for the current fiscal is expected to touch 8,75,000 tonnes with anticipated rain-guarding of more areas.

From April to May 2024, total rubber production in India amounted to 81,000 tonnes, whereas the total production during the same period last year was 82,000 tonnes. The production loss is attributed to the early rains in May.

Domestic consumption during 2023-24 was 14,16,000 tonnes against 13,50,000 tonnes the previous year. The auto tyre sector registered a positive growth of 0.4% while the general rubber goods sector grew by 15.4%. Auto tyre manufacturing sector accounted for 67.3% of the total natural rubber consumed during this period.

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