Sri Lanka Encourages Tyre Rubber Production
At the end of June Sri Lanka’s government announced plans to encourage small farmers to produce more tyre grade rubber. Local news sources reported that plantations industries minister Mahinda Samarasinghe said a policy decision was taken aimed at increasing production of the RSS 3 type rubber grade: “Although most people think RSS 1 is the best and it is, the biggest demand is for RSS 3…That’s what big industrialists want. They are the main buyers of rubber.”
Industry officials said rubber prices have been at record highs in recent months owing to production shortages and rising demand as the world comes out of recession. They said the local industry prefers the RSS 3 grade in preference to RSS 1, which although considered the best grade, is more expensive than RSS 3. And seeing as rubber is graded according to its visual appearance and there is little difference between in terms of physical properties of the main grades, you can see why those producing tyres which are subsequently stained with carbon black are less interested in the aesthetics of rubber.