Agri-Business

High exports spur tea board’s plans for U.S. show

Global vistas: A delegation visited Dubai in Feb. and plans are in the pipeline for the U.S. and China.   | Photo Credit: DredK

In a bid to sustain the high level of exports touched last year, the Tea Board is proposing a delegation to participate in a food show in the U.S. A delegation to further trade prospects with China is also on the anvil. It has already taken a delegation to Dubai in February.

Indian tea exports had touched 240.7 million kg in 2017. Five importing countries, including two of India’s rivals in the global arena, helped India reach this export level. “This level is sustainable, with a possibility of enhancement,” S. Soundararajan, Director Tea Development, Tea Board of India, said.

Higher price

In several countries, including the U.S., Indian teas were sold at prices higher than the average export price of $3 per kg. This buoyancy now makes a 15% rise to 275 million kg by 2020 seem attainable, said a source.

The board is planning to participate in the 64th Summer Fancy Food Show, a major food and beverage exposition in New York, starting June 30. It had first participated in this event last year.

While last year the biggest contributors to India’s exports were Egypt, (which increased imports by 166%), Sri Lanka (which increased imports by 84.8%) and China (where Indian tea exports increased 50%), exports to the U.S. too had risen. For India, the U.S. is beginning to emerge as an important market, following a Tea Board of India campaign to highlight the beverage as a health drink.

Exports to the U.S. stood at 14.1 million kg in 2017. Sources said the U.S. was a 130-million kg market, mainly serviced by Argentina.

India is now targeting a larger slice of this market with speciality teas such as orthodox, Darjeeling and green tea. In 2017, Indian tea was showcased at food shows and through delegations to the U.S., Russia, Australia, Germany and in Chile.

Azam Monem Chairman, ITA, had said there was a preference for Indian teas in several markets and the delegations helped showcase the bouquet of teas available. In February, a delegation had visited Dubai, while those to the U.S. and China are in the pipeline.

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Printable version | Apr 14, 2021 11:31:41 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/business/agri-business/high-exports-spur-tea-boards-plans-for-us-show/article23468217.ece

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