Chinese tea exports brew record year in 2006

By Neil Merrett

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: Tea

China has consolidated its position as one of the world's leading
tea producers as export demand continues to drive growth in the
sector, according to figures by China's chamber of commerce for the
import and export of foodstuffs (CFNA).

The results highlight increasing popularity in markets like Russia and the US for local blends like oolong and green teas, resulting in record sales for producers in China.

Tea exports reached over €420m by the end of 2006, increasing by 12 per cent over the previous year.

Of the more popular blends sold to foreign markets green tea was found to be the most dynamic in terms of both growth and sales. Exports of the product had increased by six per cent to a value of almost €300m.

Though other varieties failed to match sales of green tea, they still showed similar strength in terms of growth.

Sales of black and oolong tea accounted for around €75,000 in sales, though are expected to grow this year by six per cent and 15 per cent respectively.

The chamber added that despite the potential for continued growth in the market, China's tea industry was still failing to match regional rivals in Sri Lanka and India

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