Tea import-export trends in focus at Dubai forum
Dubai, April 9, 2014
The latest international import and export trends of tea trade were discussed at an ongoing meeting of more than 300 delegates from over 30 tea producing and consuming nations in Dubai.
The fifth Global Dubai Tea Forum 2014, hosted by Dubai Multi Commodities Centre (DMCC), has brought together suppliers and manufacturers, producers, exporters, importers and ancillary industries to Sofitel Dubai, Palm Jumeirah.
Ahmed Bin Sulayem, executive chairman, DMCC, said: “Globally it is a prosperous time for the tea industry, it is estimated that over three billion cups of tea are served each day around the world.”
“Last year we doubled the volumes of tea handled through the DMCC Tea Centre and the total volumes of tea flowing through Dubai increased by 29 per cent to 129,000 tonnes. It does not stop here, now is the time to collectively identify the next big opportunities that will enable the industry to grow throughout the entire supply chain.”
Four countries produce approximately 70 per cent of the world’s tea - China 1.64 billion tonnes (35 per cent), India 980,000 tonnes (20 per cent), Kenya 380,000 tonnes (8 per cent) and Sri Lanka 340,000 tonnes (7 per cent).
In terms of tea exports, Kenya tops the ratings, followed by Srilanka, China and India. The top tea importer is Russia with 182,000 tonnes, followed by UK with 157,000 tonnes and the US with 116,000 tonnes.
The UAE is the fourth largest importer with 109,000 tonnes annually, but is the largest re-exporter of tea globally with over 60 per cent of the world’s market share, said a report.
Sanjeev Dutta, director, DMCC Tea Centre, said: “The DMCC Tea Centre aims to enhance the value of tea through the supply chain from the growers plants to the consumers cups. Tea comes into Dubai in bulk, which can then be blended and packaged in loose tea form or tea bags to be re-exported. One of our strategic goals is diversifying our product lines to include specialty teas and further improving our facilities and services available to our customers.”
“In 2013 we handled a record 13 million kilos, which is expected to grow further this year. A big focus for the DMCC Tea Centre this year is to work with industry leaders to centralise their procurement and distribution operations out of Dubai. If we achieve this, we would expect a five or even seven-fold growth in the bulk volume handled through the tea centre by the end of 2014,” he said.
The delegates discussed the latest tea industry trends, challenges and opportunities from brands through to innovations, customer focus and supply chain management across the sector.
John Brash, founder of Brash Brands, focused his address on the importance of strong brands from the plantation themselves to the products on the supermarket shelves in order to succeed.
“The tea industry has a great opportunity to connect with Generation Y to secure its position as the most popular drink in the world after water. However, if they don’t come to us, we must go to them, in their space, whether it’s Facebook or the local shopping mall. Generation Y is brand conscious but not brand loyal, that is the challenge.”
Other topics include ‘Global Market Trends in the Tea, Fruit and Herbal Infusion Market’; ‘Global Tea Market Situation’; ‘Turkish Tea Industry’; and ‘The Future of Tea – What will the Industry Look Like in 2030? The Challenges and Opportunities.’ - TradeArabia News Service