09 May 2010

Sri Lanka Tea Exports to Top $ 1.5bn. Designs Emblems for Niche Brands from Regions

08th May 2010, www.dailynews.lk, By Harshini Perera

Tea export revenue is expected to reach US $ 1.5 billion as a result of the rising trend in tea prices and production.

The improving economic condition and tapping new markets have resulted in an increase of Ceylon tea exports for the first quarter of this year, Sri Lanka Tea Board Chairman Lalith Hettiarachchi told Daily News Business.

He said Sri Lanka Tea Board has encouraged regional tea production. They expect to promote tea internationally going by the region.

“We have already designed emblems for the regions and submitted information to the National Intellectual Property office. Sri Lanka Tea Board is expecting local registration soon and it will be submitted to the World Trade Organization for international registration,” he said.

The Tea Broad Chairman said the classification of tea according to the region of its origin will attract different tastes of the people internationally. The new marketing strategy will increase tea exports further.

Among Sri Lanka’s exports, 58 percent is bulk while 42 percent is value added tea. He stressed the need to increase value added tea exports.

He said that as a means of promoting value added tea, few more incentives will be given to producers.

“There are more than 700 HACCP certificates issued for industrialists and 21 industrialists have already applied for this year. We can expect an increase in the number of industrialists who will apply for HACCP certification in the future,” he said.

He said the authorities should grant necessary funding to issue the HACCP certification for industrialists. Currently, the SWITCH ASIA project provides necessary funding providing free consultancy for industrialists.

Tea Export Targets
* US$ 1.5 billion this year
* 58 percent bulk tea exports
* 42 percent value added tea exports
* 21 new applicants for HACCP

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