SAPPTA celebrates silver jubilee
The Spices and Allied Products Traders Association (SAPPTA) recently
held its 25th Annual General Meeting and also had its Silver Jubilee
The Chief Guest was Mr. Ranugge, Secretary, Ministry of Export
Development and International Trade was standing in for his Minister
Professor Peiris who could not be present due to unavoidable
The outgoing Chairman, Mr. Kathrik Ramachandran in his address stated
that the year 2008/2009 contributed Rs. 16.8 billion in exports of
spices and allied products. This he said, was a small growth over the
previous year. Volumes grew from 29122 to 33026 tonnes during this
period, he added. He stated that the global demand for spices will
continue to increase as the awareness now exists that spices contribute
to a healthy life style.
K. Ramachandran cautioned that a very few indigenous exporters having
a vested interest in the spice extraction industry tried to get the
Government to introduce an export cess on Pepper Light berries and
Nutmegs BWP which exercise would have benefited their extraction
SAPPTA lost no time in bringing to the notice of the Government that
the introduction of any such levy would discourage the growers.
He emphasised that the producers would be called upon to subsidise
the extractors. Saner counsel prevailed as no cess was introduced, he
The outgoing Chairman also stated that the Department of Export
Agriculture is making a study to ascertain whether the banning of the
export of Pepper Light Berries would lead to greater exports of Pepper.
SAPPTA is against any state intervention of this nature. he added.
Mr. Ranugge, the Chief Guest stated that a regular dialogue must be
maintained between the Government and the export Association to
determine what is best for the export sector before changes in policy
The incoming Chairman Mr. Christopher Fernando stated that the
Plantation Sector has got involved in a small way in diversifying and
gone into the production of spices. SAPPTA will continue to endeavour to
get the Estates more involved.
Addressing the Silver Jubilee AGM of SAPPTA, Mr. Fernando said that
theft of produce is killing the spice industry. No serious investor will
invest his money and time if he cannot reap his harvest. We implore the
Government to introduce rules of deterrents against theft of
Paying a tribute to all stakeholders in the spice industry growers,
exporters, produce broker's, traders etc; whose achievement has
sustained and enhanced the progress of SAPPTA to reach its preset
To commemorate the Silver Jubilee, fifteen members, became life
members and received plaques from the Chief Guest.
In addition SAPPTA identified and honoured a member, Mr. Lakshman
Kodytuwakku for the excellent service to the Spice Industry over a
period of over forty years.
Mr. Gulam Chatoor, founder Chairman of SAPPTA, in the Citation,
recalled his uninterrupted association with the Spice trade in Sri Lanka
over a period of 45 years and stated that he had always displayed a
pleasant relationship with people and that has made him very popular in