Price hike at the Hong Kong tea fair

21 August 2012
Price hike at the Hong Kong tea fair

The Hong Kong tea fair is taking place at the moment, and the context is particularly difficult for western buyers. For the past few years, erratic weather conditions have affected harvests, and the quantities produced have fallen sharply. In addition, production costs, whether in India or China, have risen considerably, as has the cost of sea freight. What is more, the very low value of the euro is pushing up the price of tea, which is generally traded in dollars. On top of all this, in China and India, the world’s two biggest tea producers, the middle classes, which did not exist in the recent past, now represent several hundreds of millions of people, many of whom enjoy drinking good quality teas. They aspired for so long, and now they have the means at their disposal. So in these two countries the domestic markets have expanded massively, and there are plenty of Indian and Chinese tea connoisseurs who are now buying the best teas that used to be reserved for export only. We can understand them, even if it is costly for us.

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