• India Update: Tea Export Markets Expand | New Association of Tea Auctioneers | Assam Folk Tea Festival Nov. 24-26

    By Aravinda Anantharaman | Managing Editor

    India Tea News for the week ending Nov. 17
    India Update | Aravinda Anantharaman
    Indian Tea Exports
    Indian tea export destinations have expanded to include Iraq, Jordan, and Turkey.

    Export Markets Expand

    Even as the industry reports a nearly 10% decrease in tea exports this year, brought about by the loss of the Iran market, the war in West Asia, and the Russia-Ukraine conflict, there has been good news. India now sees three new markets in Iraq, Jordan, and Turkey, replacing their traditional source, Sri Lanka. The work to develop these markets has been ongoing for a while. In 2021, the Baghdad Chamber of Commerce invited India to participate in the country’s first-ever tea festival. In 2022, Indian tea exports to Turkey were valued at $7.36 million, according to the United Nations COMTRADE database on international trade. As for Jordan, over the past four years, there has been substantial growth in Jordan’s exports to India, especially with phosphates and potash, while imports from India include coffee, tea, spices, sugar, grains, meat, and fish.

    New Association of Auctioneers

    Auctioneers across India have decided to collectivize as the Association of Tea Auctioneers. With 40% of the Indian tea production sold via auctions, it seems that auctioneers felt the need to unite to promote and safeguard their rights and interests. Thirteen auctioneers have come forward to form the ATA, launched on November 10th with a ceremonial manual auction at the famed Nilhat House in Kolkata. 795 lots of orthodox Assam tea was on offer with Gaurav Ghosh, Vice Chairman of J Thomas and Co., as the auctioneer for the day. Buyers were almost all exporters, and the auction took place over 6 hours. Bringing back the manual auction for a day was also to celebrate how auctions used to take place before the industry transitioned to e-auctions. The ATA has proposed to design and operate a new auction system if the government approves. 

    Folk Tea Festival

    Journalist Mrinal Talukdar is set to host the 3rd Folk Tea Festival in Assam this month. Spread over three days, the festival takes place at the Hatipoti Tea Estate near North Bank, Assam. It’s organized in a small tea garden and is a festival promoting folk music, local culture, and tea. This year, the festival is scheduled for November 24th to 26th. Those interested can book via the website Folktea.In where the schedule, accommodation options, and events are listed.

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