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Sri Lanka ambitious to tap deeper into China's tea market

By Bi Nan ( chinadaily.com.cn ) Updated: 2016-08-04 16:38:02

Sri Lanka ambitious to tap deeper into China's tea market

Performers from Sri Lanka dance at the Ceylon Tea Day event in Beijing, August 3, 2016. [Photo/chinadaily.com.cn]

Sri Lanka is launching a campaign to promote its Ceylon tea in China, mainly eyeing female consumers who are fans of black tea.

"We've done a research and it shows that black tea is becoming more and more popular among the females, so Sri Lanka will primarily target on female consumers in China," said Hasitha De Alwis, director of promotion from the Sri Lanka Tea Board during the Ceylon Tea Day, an event organized by the Embassy of Sri Lanka in Beijing and the Sri Lanka Tea Board.

Sri Lanka is also eyeing on the younger generation who is always trying new things and prefers to drink tea in a non-traditional way, like with milk and sugar.

To better adapt to Chinese consumers' taste, Sri Lanka is also producing light tea in some certain regions, which is very similar to Chinese green tea, but in a fully fermented manner, which is a special feature of Ceylon tea.

Hon. Navin Dissanayake, Minister of Plantation Industries in Sri Lanka, said Sri Lanka's tea export volume to China is in steady growth during recent years as the volume reached 7.2 million kilograms in 2015.

Sri Lanka is especially known for its Ceylon tea, which is fully fermented black tea, and can be consumed straight or mixed with milk or sugar. As black tea is said to be quite beneficial for women, more females are turning to the black tea as their tea of choice.

China ranks 11th in major exporting countries of Ceylon tea and Sri Lanka ranks second in major importing countries of Chinese tea from 2011-2014, according to Alwis.

To celebrate the 150th anniversary of commercial tea plantations in Sri Lanka, a series of events are planned to take place in 2017, and China will be invited to participate at these projects as a partner.

Alwis revealed that an International Tea Convention and Ceylon Tea expo will be held next year, and the world's largest tea party, intending to be included in the Guinness world record, will be staged, as well as a tea competition among world tea producers.

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