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Tea Fair Attracts Nearly 90,000 Visitors and Buyers
Hong Kong Consumers Prefer Green Tea, Oolong, Pu-erh
Majority of Interviewees Spends HK$100 or More a Month on Tea

  The first Hong Kong International Tea Fair, 13-15 August, attracted nearly 90,000 visitors and buyers

17 August 2009 – More than 9,500 buyers, 40 per cent from 68 countries and regions outside Hong Kong, attended the first Hong Kong International Tea Fair, 13-15 August, organised by the Hong Kong Trade Development Council (HKTDC) and Chinese Tea Culture International Exchange Association. About 80,000 public visitors also took in the fair, which opened to the public on its last day. 

Food Expo, which opened 13 August and ends today, has drawn more than 350,000 public visitors to date, 5,000 of whom are overseas visitors. Visitor numbers are up 15 per cent over last year. 

"The impressive turnout for our inaugural tea fair by overseas buyers, as well as local buyers and the general public, deserves a round of applause. The numbers show that the fair has successfully served as a trading platform for tea, enhancing the role of Hong Kong as a tea-trading hub in Asia," said Raymond Yip, Assistant Executive Director of the HKTDC. 

The HKTDC commissioned Actrium, an independent research company, to interview buyers and public visitors during the tea fair. Among the 288 interviewed buyers, 96 per cent said that they were satisfied with the fair, with 66 per cent noting that this was the first time they had taken part in any tea fair in Asia. About 85 per cent of buyers interviewed said that they have started some negotiation or placed some orders during the fair, while more than 60 per cent said that the fair provided a good platform for them to source new products, meet with existing suppliers, find new suppliers and obtain market updates. More than 90 per cent said that they would like to attend the fair again next year. 

More than 90 per cent of the buyers interviewed for the survey agreed with the following comments: Hong Kong has the capability to host an international tea competition, which helps enhance tea trade and promote tea brands; Hong Kong has a comprehensive system and regulations on beverage quality testing and assuring; Hong Kong suppliers provide quality services in marketing and packaging services. 

Most buyers also thought that Hong Kong has the potential to develop into Asia's tea leaf auction centre. They also said that, because Hong Kong does not produce much tea of its own, it can develop into a fair and bias-free trading and marketing centre. 

The survey also looked at the tea-drinking habits of the public. Among the 225 interviewed public visitors, about 60 per cent said that they usually drink green tea (including Japanese green tea, lung-jing and bi-luo-chun); 50 per cent noted that they generally drink oolong and pu-erh; 55 per cent said that drinking tea is an enjoyable activity; about 40 per cent drink tea for better digestion, and for waking and relaxation, while 28 per cent drink tea for beauty and health reasons. 

Regarding spending habits, about 65 per cent spend HK$100 or more each month on tea, and four per cent spend more than HK$1,000 a month on tea. About 99 per cent ranked the taste of tea as the most important factor when buying, with the smell of tea second; 70 per cent said price is also an important factor. 

The first Hong Kong International Tea Fair attracted more than 250 exhibitors from 17 countries and regions. The survey interviewed 148 exhibitors; 85 per cent of the interviewed exhibitors said that they generally found buyers through exhibitions; more than 30 per cent of those interviewed said that they found buyers through product magazines and online. 

The fair's Tea Gallery featured more than 50 activities, including tea-brewing demonstrations, seminars and a series of Tea Forums, attracting over 4,600 people. During the fair period, the first KamCha Competition (Hong Kong-style milk tea) and "The Most Beloved Tea" voting game were held. Voting results were as follows: 

Black Tea Category:
New Tan Yang, Fujian Alphine Black Tea, Fu Jian New Tan Yang Tea Co Ltd

Green Tea Category:
Guit Zhoub Beef Ghab Nex Jil, Tea Roll, Guizhou Classical Yunwu Tea Co Ltd

Oolong Tea Category:
Essence, White bud Chelan, World Essence Holdings Ltd

White Tea Category:
Duoqi Silver Needle Tea, Fu Jian Fuding Dongnan White Tea Imp & Expo Co Ltd

"The survey shows that Hong Kong is an ideal platform for tea trading and marketing," added Mr Yip. "We will continue to help the industry explore business opportunities."

Supporting video of these events is available, free of charge, on www.thenewsmarket.com/hktdc.

Media Enquiries
Please contact the HKTDC's Corporate Communication Department:

Joe Kainz
Tel: (852) 2584 4216
Email: joe.kainz@hktdc.org

About the HKTDC
Established in 1966, the Hong Kong Trade Development Council (HKTDC) is the international marketing arm for Hong Kong-based traders, manufacturers and service providers. With more than 40 offices worldwide, including 11 in the Chinese mainland, the HKTDC promotes Hong Kong as a platform for doing business with China and Asia. The HKTDC also organises trade fairs and business missions to connect companies with opportunities in Hong Kong and the mainland, while providing information via trade publications, research reports and online. For more information, www.hktdc.com




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