Tobacco Board was established with a mission to strive for the overall development of tobacco growers and the Indian Tobacco Industry.Tobacco is an important commercial crop grown in India. It occupies the third position in the world with an annual production of about 800 Million Kgs. Of the different types grown, flue-cured tobacco, country tobacco, burley, bidi, rustica and chewing tobacco are considered important. India stands 3rd in production of tobacco and in exports, Brazil and USA are ahead of India.
Tobacco and tobacco products earn approx Rs.20,000 Cr. to the national exchequer by way of excise duty, and approx.Rs.5000 Cr. by way of foreign exchange every year.
Recognizing the need to regulate production, promote overseas marketing and control recurring instances of imbalances in supply and demand, which lead to market problems, the Government of India under the Tobacco Board Act of 1975, established the Tobacco Board, in place of the Tobacco Export Promotion Council. The Board came into existence from 1-1-1976 and opened its head quarters at Guntur in Andhra Pradesh, India.
The Tobacco Board Act aims at planned development of Tobacco Industry in the country. The various activities of the Board outlined in the Act for the promotion of the industry are-
Regulating the production and curing of Virginia Tobacco with regard to the demand in India and abroad.
Constant monitoring of the Virginia tobacco market, both in India and abroad and ensuring fair and remunerative price to the growers and reducing wide fluctuations in the prices of the commodity.
Sustaining and improving the existing international markets and developing new markets overseas for Indian Virginia Tobacco and its products and devising marketing strategies in consonance with demand for the commodity including group marketing under limited brand names.
Establishing auction platforms for sale of Virginia tobacco by registered growers and functioning as an auctioneer at auction platforms either established by it or registered with it.
Recommending to the Central Government the minimum prices to be fixed for exportable Virginia tobacco with a view to avoiding unhealthy competition amongst the exporters. (Under its Exim policy, the Government decided to abolish fixation of M.E.P. with effect from 1-4-1993).
Regulating other aspects of Virginia tobacco marketing in India and export of Virginia tobacco having due regard to the interests of growers, manufacturers, dealers and the nation.
Propagating information useful to the growers, dealers and exporters (including packers) of Virginia tobacco and manufacturers of tobacco products and others concerned.
Purchasing Virginia tobacco from growers when the same is considered necessary or expedient for protecting the interests of the growers and disposing it in India or abroad as and when considered appropriate.
Promoting tobacco grading at the level of growers.
Sponsoring, assisting, co-coordinating or encouraging scientific, technological and economic research for promotion of tobacco.