Australian investors should brace themselves for an onslaught of teas from China.
The Asian country has a lot of tea to offer in terms of quality, flavour and prices, but its tea is particularly competitive.
It has the world’s second-highest per capita consumption of tea, according to the International Tea and Tea Products Association, with China second.
The Chinese market is home to some of the most expensive tea in the world, and the country has long been an advocate of quality.
In fact, the country’s tea exports have grown from $500 million in 2000 to $8 billion last year, according the ITPAA.
China has been an enthusiastic supporter of the Chinese market, with tea exports to China growing by almost a quarter since 2010.
Last year, the Chinese government launched a programme that provides subsidies for tea buyers in China.
And the price of tea has been a major factor in China’s expansion.
In 2015, the China National Tea Export Association said that the country sold almost 20 billion tonnes of tea worth $13.5 billion, a jump of nearly 20 per cent from a year earlier.
But it isn’t just China’s tea export that has surged in popularity.
In 2017, India imported $3.8 billion worth of tea from China, according ToI.
India is the world market leader in terms, but there are other markets that are catching up.
The US has been the leading tea importer for over two decades, and in recent years has expanded its market.
The USA imported $8.2 billion worth, up 30 per cent on the year before.
The United Kingdom, India and France have also been big consumers of Chinese tea.
India, on the other hand, has been slowing its tea imports, with prices in 2018 coming in below what they were last year.
But the government of Narendra Modi has been pushing for greater transparency and openness in India’s tea trade, and has increased the price for tea to make it more competitive.
There are other factors at play too.
China has become a huge tea producer in recent decades, so many countries have invested in their tea production.
So the country is trying to diversify its tea exports, which in turn has boosted prices.
India has a large and growing tea sector, which has helped it to develop its tea industry, says the Economic Times.
The country also has its own teas, and is the largest exporter of tea in India.
India’s tea industry has seen a surge in production, particularly as the country diversified its export markets.
Trying to compete against China in the tea market is a real challenge for Indian tea companies, says Sivaraj Vakil, an associate professor at the University of Sydney.
It is a huge challenge for the tea companies in India, which have seen a huge decline in the export market since the early 1990s.
So we have to be careful not to become dependent on China and its market,” he says.
However, in India tea is the most popular tea in terms in terms not only of taste but also quality.