Kochi: Even amid the Covid-19 pandemic crisis, coir pith produced in India is having more takers in overseas market. In the first seven months of the current fiscal year (until October 2021), the value of pith exported from the country stood at Rs 1,204 crore. During this period, 4.1 lakh tonnes of pith was exported. Notably, during the previous fiscal's corresponding period, the value stood at Rs 980 crore, while the quantity exported was 3.8 lakh tonnes. The exporters point out that exports have increased within the last five years. Similarly, the enquiries from private companies in other countries too have increased, said sources.
The coir pith has been majorly exported to countries like the US, Netherlands, South Africa and China. However, the total number of countries to which the pith is exported is 94. The demand for the pith is due to its moisture retention capacity and it is ideal for cultivating anthuriums and orchids. Apart from that, the pith has been used for many agricultural purposes including soil conditioning.
The exports were affected amid a surge in Covid-19 cases. However, now there are no such constraints. Coir Board expects that the export volume will further rise in the coming years.
Coming to Kerala, the production of coir pith is very less in the state. However, now the demand for it has increased. Even during the Covid-19 lockdown, the demand witnessed a 10 to 20 per cent increase. The producers have informed that the production will be increased in tandem with the new demand.