Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi has requested the Union Ministry of Industry and Commerce to take this step at the earliest as this will lead to improvement in quality of tea.
     
"Quality of made tea will definitely improve as handling of tea leaf will be much less while processing in own factories," Gogoi said.
     
He urged the Centre to ensure that the Tea Board should effectively carry out one of its core functions of financial and technical assistance to the unorganised small growers.
     
The post of Director in the Directorate of Small Tea Growers, however, has not even been created till today which has hampered its function of supporting small tea growers.
     
The Chief Minister called for creation of the post and appointment of a suitable person to it urgently.
     
The Assam government had formulated a Cess Utilisation Policy exclusively for the development and welfare of small tea growers in 2011.
    
North East Tea Association (NETA) also called for the setting up of micro and mini Tea factories by a small tea grower or a group of small tea growers which was already decided at the Tea Board's Board meeting last year.

NETA Chairman Bidyanand Barkakoty pointed out that it was approved that the Micro and Mini Factories will be exempted from registration under the provisions of Tea Marketing Control Order (TMCO) and will be provided subsidy at the rate of 40 per cent of the actual cost of plant and machinery (excluding land cost).
    
Tea Board will need to issue some sort of permission letter to such Mini and Micro factories so that the factories are able to sell their produce through auction centres.
    
Barkakoty pointed out that a NETA member Agnigarh Bioplantations has set-up a mini factory to produce organic orthodox tea and organic green tea.
    
However, due to delay in issuance of requisite permission letter from the Tea Board, the said factory is facing serious difficulty in running its operations.
    
Barkakoty further urged the Tea Board to devise schemes in a manner to suit different sizes of tea estates.
    
"Currently, the same schemes of Tea Board are applicable for a tea garden of 76 bighas and a tea garden of 12,000 bighas," he said.
    
Separate schemes should be prepared for tea estates having an average yield per hectare of 15 quintals and below so that they can become viable units within a specific period of time, he added.
    
Out of the total 81,058 tea growers in Assam, 80,293 were small tea growers (area upto 10.12 hectares) and their production has progressively increased from 26.25 per cent in 2008 to around 30 per cent in 2013.

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