Sri Lanka exporters told to aim at US iced tea market

Feb 14, 2012 (LBO) – The market for tea in the United States is growing rapidly with the best prospects being in ready-to-drink teas, Joseph Simrany, president of the Tea Association of USA has told Sri Lanka’s tea industry. Even beverage multinationals were shifting towards tea which is also becoming increasingly popular among younger American consumers, he said.

“The US economy is improving. It’s a little bit damaged right now but it’s going to come back and it’s going to come back in a big way – so don™t just right off the US market,” Simrany said.

In the North American market about 85 percent of tea is consumed over ice, he told an international tea convention held in Colombo recently.

“It is considered one of the most vibrant markets in the world. As the economy strengthens it is going to propel tea even further.”

The US is the sixth largest consumer of tea in world and RTDs teas not only appeal to young people but also appeal to convenience.

“RTDs teas are the way of the future,” Simrany said.

The traditional tea market in the US is expected to grow 2-3 percent a year while RTD tea will grow 5-10 percent.

Total beverage consumption volumes have rebounded after falling in 2008