Overview of China’s Tea Market

Chinese tea industry can be classified into two main categories, raw tea and refined tea. Raw tea refers to tea leaves that are picked and processed; while refined tea refers to tea obtained from the extraction of impurities, fine powdery substances and fragmented leaves found in raw tea.

Meanwhile, Chinese tea can be further categorised into four types, green tea and white tea of non-fermented tea, oolong tea of semi-fermented tea, red tea of fully-fermented tea, and black tea of post-fermented tea. The Group currently specialises in the plantation of oolong tea and green tea.

China is the world’s largest tea manufacturer and the second largest export country, the industry has gained a 36% increase in CAGR in the recent decade. Currently, the tea industry is rather fragmented, with a room for improvement in both industry concentration level and brand market share. The China’s tea industry is full of development opportunities in the future with domestic consumption and exports both improving.

Since 2009, China’s tea production and domestic sales has gained a significant increase. As of 2014, China’s tea production has increased over 53% to 2.1 million. Meanwhile, sales have increased over 79% to 1.8 million from 1.0 million in 2009.

Starting from June 2014, 21 different tea national standards were newly implemented, covering sampling, component measurement, storage, management and other aspects of tea production process. In which, “Oolong Tea Part One: Basic Requirements” and “Oolong Tea Part Two: Tie Guan Yin” were most related to Fujian’s tea industry. These newly implemented regulations are expected to have a great significance in promoting China’s tea industry standardisation, and can significantly help to maintain product quality and reinforce customers’ confidence in oolong tea brands.

Furthermore, in the recent 25th International Tea Standardisation Conference, oolong Tea international standard was officially formulated. Current international tea standards, covering red, green and white tea were all established by foreigners, forming a technical barrier on the China’s tea export. International standard establishment of oolong tea is China’s first international standard establishment project, aiding the standardisation of China’s oolong tea production and import and export trade. Especially for companies specialising in the plantation of oolong tea, such as Ping Shan, this project has a positive implication in the future.