ITGA Crop Monitor: December 2019_nº6
The year of 2019 has been quite a struggle for tobacco growers. By now the sector is accustomed to the challenge that is growing tobacco. The pressure that the product has suffered from anti-smoking campaigns and policies has decreased tobacco consumption and with it the demand for tobacco leaf. However, tobacco continues being a valuable production.
The 2019 tobacco crop for the American tobacco grower was very different depending on the region. The U.S. tobacco campaign was affected by heat and drought that started in the middle of May and difficulted the growers’ ability to irrigate their plants and then Hurricane Dorian multiplied the problems. The overall quality of the crop may have suffered from these situations leading to lower prices being offered by the leaf buyers. Even though, the yield of Flue-cured Virginia improved to 2,253 kgs per ha (+17.4% or +335kgs) the yield for Burley tobacco fell to 1,690 kg per ha produced (-7.2% or -131 kgs). To get the most out of the tobacco crop growers must focus on increasing the quality and yield of the tobacco produce. The key giveaway is to maximize the earning potential while reducing the costs to grow, thus increasing profitability and ensuring the sustainability of the crop.