The benefits of tea: How the brew is making a comeback

Winter blues. The dark mornings and polar temperatures are no motivation for getting up, and if you’re a nine to five-er, caffeine is a crucial life force. For early risers, coffee consumption has trumped tea for years – by 2021, the world will drink almost double the amount of coffee than tea.

This doesn’t look great for the global tea trade. But not all is lost –  in 2016, the world consumed 2.9 million tonnes of tea, up from 1.6 in 2002. A report by Euromonitor International shows that between 2016-2021, global tea consumption will grow 15 per cent while coffee consumption will do so by only 11.3 per cent. We’re here to celebrate the underdog, with a few facts about our beloved brew, and how it gets from A to B.

  1. The UK is not the largest tea importing nation. That title goes to Russia, which, in 2016, imported US$548.3 million-worth of tea, or nine per cent of the world’s total tea imports. Russians (86 per cent of them) apparently take it black. The UK comes in third, after the US, in second place.
  2. Various peer-reviewed studies have backed the health-giving properties of tea. None have yet confirmed the properties attributed to it in ancient China – for example that it can act as an antidote to the poisonous effects of around 70 different herbs.
  3. Tea comes in six main varieties: white, yellow, green, oolong, black and “post-fermented”. But all tea is produced from the same plant – camellia sinensis.
  4. Black tea exports are projected to reach  67 million tonnes in 2023, with the major exporting countries expected to remain the same: Kenya is the largest exporter followed by Sri Lanka, India, Vietnam, Indonesia, Malawi, Uganda and Tanzania.
  5. The fastest-growing markets for tea in the past five years were Vietnam , Morocco  Netherlands and the US. The greatest drops were seen in the UAE, Canada and Kazakhstan.

IAG Cargo ships perishables through its Constant Fresh product, offering aircraft hold temperature settings monitored throughout the flight , refrigerated trucks and dedicated handling facilities in Madrid and London.