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State ensures branding of Darjeeling tea as export strategy

KOLKATA: The state government is all set to create a branding of Darjeeling tea with the objective of getting a niche market and tapping the international export market in a greater way.
"We are working upon a strategy to have Darjeeling tea packaged and branded in Bengal itself. Now, Darjeeling tea is exported in bulk to many states and also to a number of foreign countries. If we can increase the brand value, we are hopeful that the tea industry will be getting higher premium," Managing Director of West Bengal Industrial Development Corporation (WBIDC) Vandana Yadav said on the sidelines of a CII conference on 'Rebuild East, Invest in Development' on Saturday.
The WBIDC is in the process of developing a strategy for the branding and will have a separate budget for the new project. "We will be inviting buyers across the globe to come and visit the tea gardens and get in touch with the tea garden authorities on their own in the form of B2B (Business to Business) meetings," a senior WBIDC official added, elaborating on the state's plan
The idea of branding Darjeeling tea has cropped up at the
two-day business summit in the Hills that concluded on March 14.
It may be mentioned that Darjeeling tea which enjoys the coveted GI tag and is liked by tea connoisseurs across the world is
facing a major crisis particularly in the wake of a political shut down in 2017 that lasted for 104 days.
The Gorkha Janamurti Morcha had forced an indefinite strike from June 9 to September end with 87 tea estates being completely shut for four months during the peak tea producing season.
Darjeeling annually produces 8.7-9 million kg of tea, the majority of which is exported.
Speaking on the priority areas in industry in the days to come, Yadav said within this year WBIDC will come up with four more industrial parks in the state in Howrah, Haldia, Haringhata and Raghunathpur.
"Design and Innovation is an area which we feel have not received its due attention. We are giving a special focus on this sector," she said.
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