Tea Biz
Tea Biz

Episode · 8 months ago

Tea News and Biz Insight - October 1, 2021


HEAR THE HEADLINES – Kenya Exports Saturate the World’s Black Tea Market | COVID Depresses Japanese Tea Business in Unique Ways | Unilever is Recognized as the Top Food and Agriculture Benchmark 

| NEWSMAKER – Mohit Agarwal Managing Director of the Asian Tea Group, owners of Cha de Magoma and the Monte Metilile brand 

| GUEST – Supply chain and procurementexpert John Snell, principal at NM Tea B, Toronto | FEATURES – This week Tea Biz travelsto Monte Metilile in Mozambique, a country along the southern coast of EastAfrica where Mohit Agarwal Managing Director of the Asian Tea Group has revived an abandoned 15,000-acre tea estate to demonstrate the viability of organic farming at scale... and then we talk with supply chain and procurement expert John Snell about what makes Mozambique such an exceptional tea-producing region. 

Producing Organic Tea at Scale 

Mozambique is the best-kept secret in the tea world, says Mohit Agarwal, Managing Director, the Asian Group. This growing region has beenhidden for centuries. With 6,325 acres under tea, Monte Metilile, located inGúruè, in Zambezia province, is the world’s largest bio-organic tea garden anda success story that demonstrates the many advantages of scale in producinggreat-tasting, high-quality, clean teas. “Farming organic at scale is applyingthe required size to solve the problem,"" he says. 

Mozambique is God's Country for Tea

A century ago, when the Portuguese first planted tea in Gúruè,Mozambique they found gentle, well-drained slopes of rich red volcanic soils at1,500 to 3,600 feet elevation – identical to the altitude of India’s Darjeelingmid-tier gardens. The climate is cool and dry from May to September and hot andhumid between October and April. Annual rainfall averages more than 3,000millimeters. By 1950 production exceeded 20,000 metric tons a year and there was more land under tea in Mozambique than any country in Africa."

The Tea Bis podcast delivers tea news that you need to know, a recap of the week's major headlines, with commentary and cultural trends. Hosted by Dan Bolton. It is the voice of origin for tea professionals and enthusiasts worldwide. Think of us as a digital caravan of storyteller, bringing authentic, authoritative and exclusive stories to you weekly from the pea length. Hello everyone here. This week's headlights. Can you exports saturate the world's black tea market. COVID depressors Japanese tea business in unique ways. Unilever is recognized as the pop food and agricultural benchmark. More in a minute, but first this important message. What makes a Perfect Cup of Ceylon tea? The Perfect Cup is from the tea businesses that ensure the protection of all the children living within their tea estates. We Salute Kailani Valley, Tell A, Wackilee, Bogajan, Thalawa, Harana and Elyptia tea estates support Save the Children Sri Lanka. Demand remain SLAT globally. Yet can you reported a nineteen percent increase in exports for almost three hundred million kilos during the first half of the year, despite falling production tobals. The reason is that Kenya is saturating the market with low cost black tea. The price of tea at the Mombassa auction average dollar ninety six per kilo through June, down from two dollars and seven sons per kiload during the same period in two thousand and twenty and well below the two dollar and fifty cent per kilo average export price for Indian tea. According to business daily Africa, Kenya is the world's biggest exporter of black tea, Pakistan, which received twenty million kilos, Egypt nine million kilos, in the UK at five million kilos, or normally the top buyers, but India has so far imported five million kilos of Kenyan tea in two thousand and twenty one, compared to one point five million kilos during the previous year. China has up to its purchases as well. India, which assesses a hundred percent tariff on tea importer for domestic consumption, is considering setting a minimum import price for boat tea designated for blending and re export. Tea imports were up a hundred and seventy six percent to twelve million kilos for the first six months, narrowing the annual total of sixteen million kilos in two thousand and nineteen. According to business daily Africa, volume at India's domestic tea auction houses is down over all and at a five month low...

...in CONAR. According to the corner or Tea Trade Association, prices for auction thirty eight last week averaged a dollar twenty five per kilo, about ninety two Indian rupeats business insight. In August, the Kenya Te Development Agency, K T DA, increased payments for green leaf. Farmers in prime key growing regions will earn twenty to twenty one canyon shillings, about twenty three to twenty five cents per kilo in US dollars, up from twenty cents. The pay increase was back dated to July first. The decision by the newly seeded KTDA board will benefit farmers who were paid a paltry seven cents per kilo twenty years ago, but it also guarantees an increase in volume at a time when the sale price at auction averaged only a dollar ninety per kilo last year. Like the rest of the world, Japanese tea growers suffered as restaurants closed, social gatherings were canceled and safety precautions limited harvest days and processing. The pandemic also inflicted setbacks unique to the market, including a sharp decline and gifting of tea at funerals. Japan's agriculture, for Nurcery and Fisheries Ministry reports that production of unrefined a Racha declined by fifteen percent in two thousand and twenty one compared to the previous year. Year on year, sales of first flush teas felled by twenty percent in she's Wolka and by seventeen percent and Kagoshima, according to ministry figures. The Japanese Association of Tea Production reports that total production of sensia declined by fifteen percent in two thousand and twenty compared to two thousand and nineteen. Japanese office workers are teleworking and drinking tea at home, but tourism dollars are down seventy nine percent compared to two thousand and nineteen, despite the Olympiad and Japan's Popular Rural Roy can hope ends or shuttered and article published in Japan Times identifies that money spent on gifting tea at funeral services is down ninety percent from a peak of thirteen point six million yen in two thousand and fifteen. The publication quoted a Tea Association spokesperson. Quote. Even if the pandemic is brought under control, I doubt funeral services will ever go back to the way they were before. and quote. Business inside. To boost sales, city and regional governments and tea growing reds are providing subsidies. She WOCA's professional government is offering producers five million the end to develop new tea products and three million the end...

...to develop new sales channels. The World benchmarking allowance as named U to lever its top food and agricultural benchmark. The Alliance, established in two thousand and eighteen, encourages seven transformations considered essential to put society and the worldwide economy on a more sustainable path. Annually, the group evaluates two thousand of the world's most influential businesses against its benchmarks and at first the alliance assess transformation in the Food and agricultural system globally, ranking three hundred and fifty companies from farm to fork. Criteria included transforming nutrition, addressing environmental issues and social inclusion. According to the alliance, the findings reveal worrying gaps in the industry's adaptation to climate change, progress on human rights and contribution to healthy diets. Quote. Only twenty six of the three hundred and fifty companies are working to reduce admissions from their direct activities through science based targets set by the Paris Agreement. Writes the alliance. You leaver, one of the world's largest food companies, received a combined score of seventy one point seven out of a hundred, ranking ahead of Nestli, which scored sixty eight point five, and Anne, which scored sixty three point six. Retailer TESCO and beverage companies PepsiCo and Anheuser Busch in Bev were among the top ten. No Food Service Company made it into the top ten, and one hundred and nineteen companies scored between ten and twenty five points. Another hundred and ten companies scored below ten points. Business Inside the alliance writes that, quote, while companies at the top of the ranking demonstrated that they are meeting societal expectations on a variety of topics. The overall average benchmark performance is low. Almost two thirds of the companies in scope failed to obtain a quarter of total scores, demonstrating significant room for improvement across all measurement areas. and quote. Arvindn and thereman in Bengaluru reports on India's tea auction prices. Indiet he pries support for the week ending twenty five September twenty twenty one. have been more developments reported. As a t boat of India launches a field recognization subsidies scheme to address the problem of labor shortage in tea gardens across India. The scheme will include smulty growers, apparently to US increasing production of specialty tea and further developments. The Minister of State for Commerce in industry and...

...of preascink petal, announced the Te Development and promotion scheme has been extended to twenty twenty six. She was speaking at the annual meeting of the United Planters Association of South India. UPASI by the incentives for Orthodox tea would discontinue. The ministry was now focused on clearing pending subsidy claims. The minister also said that the government was monitoring tea imports, which has raised concerns among producers in markets. Ghati saw a good demand for sale. Thirty eight major blenders were active for dusty. Calcutta saw good demand for all tea types, with Orthodox tea leading the list major blenders were active. Middle East was active for Orthodox tea, while hinder stand, Unilever and Tatta consumer products continue to be active for Dajili MONSOONTI's. In the south, leafty sales volume was higher than dust. Combined Leaf sales was sixty to eighty percent. Across Kunur, Kachin and Coimbato, two hundred and thirty three kilos of green tea was an offer and about half of it was sold. And now a word from our sponsor. U Trade understands that a successful tea blend goes beyond the creative fusion of appearance, a Roma and flavor. Our Multi Award Winning Product Development Team is passion it about converting natural ingredients into sensory experiences the customers crave. Every recipe is formulated with a commercial backbone of dependable quality sourcing, with a pricing structure that supports a safe, regulated, profitable and scalable bland q trade meets every brand's retail, food service and ECOMMERCE need. For more information, visit our website, que trade tea'scom This Week Tab is travels to Monte mantilly and Mozembique, a country along the southern coast of East Africa where Moheed Agwald, director of the Asian Tea Group, has revived and abandoned fifteen thousand Acre Tea Estate to demonstrate the viability of organic farming at scale. And then we talk with supply chain and procurement expert John Snell about what makes Mozembig such an exceptional tea producing region. Mohit Agwal, director of the Asian Tea Group, the company that owns Chad Demagoma and the Montem attilly brand, as walking the garden as we speak via zoom, describing the organic dairy herd, a forest of renewable eucalyptus used for fuel, the large hydroelectric turbines that power the plantation free actories, pointing to the brilliant green tea bushes stretch as far as the I can see, he explains that during fifteen years of civil war, from one thousand nine hundred and seventy seven until one thousand nine hundred and ninety two mosambis tea plant...

...patients were abandoned because of the gentle slopes. There's no water logging in the plantations and everything. This is the terrain of Mozambi, the soil, the rainfall and the gentle slopes. What we have here. Montem actilly specializes in the cultivation organic holly if is as well as commercial grades of CTC. Could you talk about your commitment to stewardship with the land and your regard for the ECO system? Yeah, natural, equal system. What we have here which is ideally suited for any plantation without chemicals of fertilizers. We have a lot of wind cover. We have six thousand actors of land, out of which two one two thousand five hundred and Thirtea, because you see those ecliptus forest dead. So we grow a lot of a lot of land is under the forest cover, a lot of land is under the CITRONELLA plantation and a lot of land is under the BOTTOMALA plantation, which stops soil erosion, which gives nitrogen to the soil and also helps us to create biocompost. There a total ban on any chemicals of fertilizer. We do totally sustainable agriculture. Even the food for our people and our executives is grown in house organic. We have our own dairy farm, which you could see, that which is we have a milk production and a cowdown which give was are Sooudung and power urn. The entire ecosystem which we built in multimately is self sustaining. This was a large scale operation with more than six thousand three hundred acres under tea, the larger sort of our organic garden in the world. Will you explain to listeners the advantages of scaling up when you're an organic farm? The whole idea was to make organic teas affordable and available to the global audience. The mural levels, when collins in most countries have become stringent, converts this entire state of two thousand and five and sixty actors of the into organic. is taken a lot of pain and a lot of hard work. We have managed to make this entire two point two or two point five million cages of peas which we produce available to the global audience at a very reasonable, affordable price. Consumers discover when barring moves on Bata. There is flavor in the team because of the climate. The temperatures in Mosambiquevarie between fifteen two thirty degrees. Because of the less heat and a very moderate climate, there is in hurrent flavors in the tea. You see, most of our bushes are chinery out here which the Portuguez are planted and there in the arche. This so we can not only produce Orthodox but we also produce green teas, we produce CTCITS, we produce cool long teas and within green we produce both steamed and roasted CTC and Orthodox. So there's a huge range of fees. We also do some specialty tea such as white teeth. The tasting notes for these teas is simply magnificent. If we get a slight musket will flavor in the Orthodox these in the winters, in the winter months and doing what you call the first flies, the teas are light bodied musket will flavored teas, whereas once the season comes...

...and we'll get a little more body in the teas, but still the brightness and the cuffs remain mellow. The Mozambique is the best kept secret in the tea world. This has been hidden for centuries and people have not got exposed to it. It was used in blends the as connational tea, but since we have exposing these teas, these teas are just delicious and fantastic for consumption without milk and sugar. They lend very well with flunkans or the Indians and it is the largest book of any selection where anybody could find in the world a century ago and the Portuguese first planet tea and most of the bag they found gentle well rained slopes of rich m volcanic soils, a one thousand five hundred thirty six hundred feet elevation identical to the altitude of India's darteromne gardens. The climb and here is cool and dry from May to September, and how a humid between October and April. Annual rainfall averages more than threezero millimeters. By one thousand nine hundred and fifty production exceeded twentyzero metric tons a year, and there was more land under tea and Mozambique than any country in Africa. Joining us is John Snell, principle at an MTB consultancy whose expertise and sourcing spans thirty five years of procurement, supply chain management and important tea for major brands and private label suppliers. John Lias. Mozambique such a Greek place to source tea. Firstly, it is the latitude of which is grown. If you look today, particularly with climate change, we are getting to see hotter and dryer climbs around the equator. The other thing on the equate is you have very little seasonality, so you get no dormancy there for bushes to really store up their energy and then produce the right material during first or second flushing or indeed at the other end of the season, at the autumnal flushing, into produce the right concentration of phenolics to make great specialty tea. So they are gifted with straight away. The second thing is the region is blessed with this necklace of lakes that sort traverse Africa from well north to south, but that spurs great ground water sources and these mountains create the watershed it or the rain shed for the entirety of Africa. Mozambique is definitely blessed with good rainfall, great loamy soil, seasonality. It's God's country. Fatigue, frankly, will you describe the Portuguese era of tea production and Mosambique? That began with plantings in the s? It was a Portuguese colony, Mazer week, for...

...seven hundred years within its vast empire, and are use that, hopefully in a good context. It was able to select Mozambique as a prodigious place to grow tea. By one thousand nine hundred and fifty it was the largest producer in Africa, I mean, you know, and only to be overtaken by Kenya for a number of reasons, but not least of which was the civil war. You see the Portuguese influence again in south India, you see it in Slanka. They have been absolutely everywhere, but most of because, I would say, their biggest triumph with respect to tea, Mosambique, to production, is resurging. It's tea industry reborn with organic cultivation and modern, more efficient processing techniques. What is the business opportunity in Mozambique? I think to be honest, you know, everyone could look at the civil war and thereafter Mosa Beige was producing, from a normal tea chaps point of view, pretty awful tea. They didn't pay too much attention to how it was produced and they didn't know a great deal about how to use the machinery. So there was a lot of light, flaky leaf to Orthodox material coming out of there fairly weedy liquors and it really didn't work very well. That the forced dormancy created by civil war has done. Mosenbeaka favorite because what it didn't do, which the rest of Africa did, was get consumed by the race to produce a lot of tea, bad, great tea. So it didn't get involved in producing a lot of clonal material that was there to produce huge volumes and and produce a lot of tanning. It was a lot of these bushes have left, been left fallow and during the Portuguese era, you know, they brought in bushes from both both as Samaica and senensis wishes. So you have a very, very good mix of both of those varieties there. And during a period when these haven't been cropped and in factor, these were trees, these trees have been naturally cross pollinating each other and creating hybrids that no one has ever designed. So now what they have, that is is a lot of different material, some of it very good for making Orthodox tea and some very good for making CTC. They have much more flexibility then you do in most other tea origins. That's that's an important factor. There is, of course, a long way to go, because you have to then understand, by plucking the leaves off these particular hybrids and understanding what liquors you're going to get from each it is which you want to then propagate from. But you do have this astounding variety of, if you will, mother bushes from which you can vegetatively propagate a massive amount of different raw material depending on where you want to go. Look at the team market today. When they were doing...

...nothing, a tea market was just black tea. Now it has proliferated to enjoy who launch Greens, whites, pours, you name it. There's a massive variety out there and therefore having a variety of starting materials is actually going to play to their advantage. I think. Intrigued by what you've heard in today's podcast, would you like to learn more from our global network of Tebas journalists and t experts? Remember to visit the Te Biz website for more comprehensive coverage. That's wwwt Biz bizcom. Thanks for listening. For a well till next week.

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