August 06, 2014: The Indian tea industry is planning a major image makeover to appeal to the young. Even as the output of small tea growers increases and initiatives for replantation and rejuvenation of tea plants gather momentum, the industry is feeling the urgent need to stay relevant to the youth demographic, which is around 60 per cent of India’s total population.
The Indian Tea Association (ITA) and the Tea Board are now planning targeted initiatives in this regard. These would include digital initiatives and offline business to consumer (B2C) tea carnivals across India. Also on the anvil are interesting and engaging tea apps for mobile phones and live updates.
It will start with a pilot campaign that will involve the setting up of mobile carnivals covering tier 1 and 2 cities and targeted at frequent visitors of malls. Initially, carnivals will be held at major locations like Gurgaon, Ahmedabad and Mumbai. After August 23, ITA plans to take it to seven more cities that will include Delhi, Bangalore and Jaipur. In these carnivals, the association plans to introduce visitors to different tea varieties and recipes of food items commonly linked to tea. Tea bodies are also realising the need to raise awareness of various health benefits of tea. Initially, the project will be led by ITA, but others are expected to join in soon. India’s per capita tea consumption currently stands around 700 gms, which indicates huge potential for growth.