Tobacco Asia

Volume 20, Number 4

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Page 70 of 87

tobaccoasia 71 images courtesy of Burley Tobacco Growers Cooperative Association China 42% 2011 India 13% Brazil 13% Other 10% Malawi 2% Argentina 2% Indonesia 2% Tanzania 2% Zimbabwe 1% Pakistan 1% Italy 1% Bangladesh 1% North Korea 1% Thailand 1% Zambia 1% Viet Nam 1% USA 4% Mozambique 1% Turkey 1% Philippines 1% Bulgaria 1% Ready-to-harvest burley tobacco in a Kentucky field Source: FAOSTAT, 2013 Global Tobacco Leaf Production by Country, 2011 mends. To illustrate his point, Pratt relates that BTGCA began purchasing tobacco under contract in 2007, implemented good agriculture practices certification in 2013, and required USDA certification from its growers in 2015, all of which are measures to assure 100% traceability at all times. To facilitate its T&T efforts, BTCGA utilizes software that records every individual purchase from each grower and maintains these records for fu- ture reference. Stemming the tide Despite all laudable efforts by reputable grower associations and leaf merchants at developing, building and deploying sophisti- cated T&T systems, the black market in illicit leaf is well alive and kicking – some industry sources even claim it's expanding at an ever faster pace. Only a global and concerted collaboration and knowledge exchange between regional and national govern- ments and law enforcement authorities on one side and grower cooperatives, traders and manufacturers on the other side can help to curb illegal activities and provide a more economically viable environment for all parties concerned. But it is going to be a tough fight.

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