“Rubber makes a hefty
contribution to our business”
Finlays Tea Estates in Sri Lanka manages 2,000 hectares of Rubber. Two dedicated estates, Hapugatenne Rubber Estate and Bibile Estate, and ten estates Tea Estates with Rubber mixed in produce 1 million kgs of high quality natural rubber latex annually.
The Rainforest Alliance certified estates in the Uva province now boast over 1,000 hectares of new rubber and timber plantations in our quest to sustainably manage land. The rocky land to Bibile, from Passara town has been replaced with rubber and land with steeper terrain at a higher altitude, has been converted to timber plantations. This has transformed the landscape into a green belt.
Trees and creepers have been planted in these fields to improve the soil structure and integrated pest control systems have reduced the use of agrochemicals.
Converting part of the land into rubber and timber cultivations has created improved employment opportunities for those who were previously threatened by the decline in tea fields. Training programmes and the chance to improve agricultural skills through the introduction of a new crop has been a benefit to the community as both employees and local farmers collaborate to pass on skills and know-how to improve practices and livelihoods. As part of this programme Finlays has established commercial nurseries to supply farmers in surrounding villages.