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The Georgian tea industry

By Messenger Staff
Tuesday, August 14
According to many predictions, by the end of 2012, Georgia will produce around 4,000 tons of tea. This is the regular figure of the last several years. Today in Georgia, there are 19 tea processing factories functioning and approximately 80% of its production is exported.

Surprisingly enough, in the local Georgian market, Azeri tea products have the biggest sales. However, Georgian local tea is slowly regaining its position inside the country. Just three-years ago, Georgian tea had about 13% of the market. In 2011, it was around 15%. This year, analysts predict around 18-20% of the local demand is satisfied by Georgian products. Specialists suggest that Georgian tea has a potential to satisfy 70% of the need of the local market if not all of the market.

During the Soviet period, Georgia produced 70-80, 000 tons of tea, satisfying not only the needs of the Soviet Union but exporting it as well. This was a prosperous industry. Today, Georgia exports its tea to some of the former Soviet Union countries including the Baltic countries, central Asian former Soviet Republics, Ukraine, as well as Germany, Britain and the USA.