The Tea Board of India is reviving the Tea Council of India (TCI) which it had earlier set-up to monitor the quality of Indian tea in international markets. TCI is being set-up under the aegis of the Tea Board and will report to the Board if the random samples it collects from the industry fail quality testing parameters.
“For any tea which will be exported, TCI will check tea quality based on FSSAI guidelines and it will be funded by us. If any sample fails to meet those parameters, it will be reported to us based on which punitive action may be taken”, A K Ray, deputy chairman at the Tea Board said on the sidelines of the Young Tea Entrepreneurs meet organised by the board here.
TCI will comprise retired industry executives and will act as a self-regulatory body for the sector.
The Board is also stepping up its marketing initiatives and will open its doors to private tea producers from the country. Under the new system of promotion, tea will be sent to the Board by individual companies. The Board, based on an outsourcing model, will then package the tea, brand it in accordance to its place of origin like Assam, Darjeeling, Dooars, Niligiri and others instead of generic branding as of now and will also mention the name of the producer whose tea has been packaged.
It undertakes such promotional activities in 47 export countries and 50 places within India.
Ray said that Sri Lanka, India’s primary competitor of orthodox teas in the export market, has lined up an investment of Rs. 45 crore in the next three years for promotions. Unless India aggressively promotes its tea in global markets, it stands to lose. He said private producers should collaborate with us, “we are not asking for funds.”
The Tea Board is also working on migrating the auction technology platform on the cloud, it is also opening a new auction centre in Jorhat in Assam which is expected to improve the earnings of the tea producers from that state.