of the Indian Rubber Industry
Post independent era of India, witnessed a remarkable development
in rubber plantation and rubber goods manufacturing industries.
by facts and figures, present industrial scenario shows India occupying
the position of the fourth largest natural rubber producer in
the world, after Thailand, Indonesia and Malaysia. There
are two types of rubber that is consumed all over the world - natural
and synthetic rubber. Today India is the fourth largest natural
rubber consumer after USA, Japan and China.
Every day the demand for rubber is increasing, and that too at
a very rapid pace. But the production rate in the country is not
able to keep at par with demand. When we talk about rubber consumption,
both natural and synthetic rubber is taken into consideration. In
India consumption of natural and synthetic rubber is in the proportion
of 80:20, compared to the global standard ratio 39:61.
In combined use of both the rubber variety, the country occupies
fifth position after developed countries, USA, Japan, China and
the Republic of Korea.
Going by the geographical location and climatic conditions that
prevails in India, it is always favorable for agro production. And
for rubber production tropical climate is must. Major rubber
plantation in India is done in the southern sector, specially Kerela
Most of the major rubber producing countries, except China, are
blessed with moderate and well distributed rainfall, which is in
contrast to the Indian regions, where we experience not only excessive,
but also highly seasonal rainfall. This produces a longer gestation
period, loss of tapping days, fungal diseases and escalation in
the costs of cultivation and production.
Rubber production in India is done in a very small scale. There
are about 911,000 smallholdings having a total share of 86
per cent in area and production. The average size of an Indian
smallholding is less than 0.50 ha, but this is redeemed by the enlightened
outlook and diligence of the average Indian smallholder, who is
willing to adopt new technology. The average yield per hectare is
higher than that of most major producing countries, and illustrates
their willingness to adopt frontier technologies. The imaginative
and responsive policies and programs of the Government of India
and the Rubber Board have also gone a long way to encourage
growth and development in this sector.
Almost 75% of rubber is consumed by the auto industry
and with development, rubber has become one of the essential
ingredient in every product, be it the household product like gasket,
or the soft buttons of a technical product like palm top, which
takes in the rest. The year 2000 saw the total requirement of natural
rubber and synthetic rubber, exceeding one million tonnes. Synthetic
and reclaimed rubber industries India has a relatively small synthetic
rubber capacity. Irrespective of the small scale production, India,
is the largest producer and user of reclaimed rubber in the world.
By 2010-11 the total consumption is likely to exceed two million
Rubber Plantations in India, is the first commercial plantation
of rubber, was started by European planters who formed the 'Periyar
Syndicate' in 1902 at Thattekad near Alwaye, Kerela
In 1904, further developments took place, particularly in Travancore,
central Kerela In that year, planting of rubber was started
in 'Yendayar', 'Eldorado' and 'Mundakayam' estates. The Governments
of Travancore, Cochin, Madras and Mysore encouraged rubber cultivation
by granting land, and the next six years saw considerable activity
in Hevea planting. Between 1905 and 1907 KE Nicoll and EG Windle
planted over 1 1100 acres (445 hectares) at Palapilly and
Pudukad with rubber on the forest land obtained as grant
from the Government.
The United Planters, Association of Southern India (UPASI) evinced
keen interest in rubber cultivation and carried out research on
various aspects, which helped in further development of commercial
plantations. Presently, in India, rubber is planted in about 5.25
lakhs hectares of land producing 5.40 lakhs MT of Natural Rubber
per annum approximately. The average yield per hectare is 1422 Kg.