New-style tea beverages brew new consumption trend

December 13, 2023 No Comments Industry News, Knowledge, New style chinese tea beverage, News ctma
A villager pours tea for customers at a tea factory of the Jingmai Mountain in Pu’er, southwest China’s Yunnan Province, Sept. 14, 2023. (Xinhua/Hu Chao)

NANNING, Dec. 1 (Xinhua) — Having savored tea for over 2,000 years, Chinese tea enthusiasts are now welcoming innovations in this age-old beverage, with trends ranging from fruit tea and bubble tea to blended drinks like chai latte, sparking a thriving market.

Peng Yonghua, a veteran engineer at the research and development center of an esteemed tea company in China’s Jiangxi Province, is one of the pioneers sensing the industry pulse and embracing this trend.

“Previously, enduring product sales were the goal, but in the new market, staying competitive requires constant innovation,” Peng said. “Currently, the R&D cycle is around one week, and it’s expected to get even faster.”

Wuyuan County Jufangyong Tea Industry Ltd. Company, where Peng works, entered the innovative tea beverage market in 2014. Established in 2005, the company is involved in various aspects, including tea cultivation, primary and deep processing, research and development, and sales.

Orders from new-style tea beverage companies are entirely customized, requiring the formulation to be developed within a short time, Peng added.

“Tea enterprises have paired traditionally incompatible ingredients, presenting customers with novel and exciting flavors, particularly catering to the adventurous tastes of the younger demographic,” said Wu Dongdong, secretary-general of the culinary catering industry association of South China’s Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region.

A set meal for tea tasting is served at Heming tea house in Chengdu, southwest China’s Sichuan Province, July 31, 2023. (Xinhua/Lan Hongguang)

Sought-after tea drink chains such as Hey Tea and Nayuki, for example, incorporate niche ingredients like emblic and shaddock peel into their products. These two fruits, cultivated in southern China, are renowned for their health benefits, including cleansing, promoting digestion, and relieving heat.

Their online advertisement, strategically highlighting unique flavors and nutritional value, has sparked a social media frenzy, drawing a flood of customers.

Upgrading raw materials for new-style tea beverages demands a shift towards greater nutrition and cost-effectiveness, putting the supply chain and R&D capabilities of brands to test, said Cheng Danying, founder of the Guangxi-based Tea Expert.

Cheng’s brand has also collaborated with many local brands to boost popularity. Effective cross-industry collaborations not only generate buzz for both brands but also leverage strengths in customer bases, membership systems, and supply chains, creating synergies greater than the sum of their parts, Cheng said.

Data released by iiMedia Research shows that in 2022, the market size of the new-style tea beverage industry exceeded 290 billion yuan (about 40.93 billion U.S. dollars), with a year-on-year growth of 5.1 percent, and the market size is expected to reach 374.93 billion yuan by 2025.

About The Author