Today India got one step closer to having tea e-auctions nationwide.
Bidding adieu to the 147-year-old manual tea auctions in South India, electronic auctioning of tea was formally inaugurated here today by Union minister of state for Commerce and Power, Jairam Ramesh, who said by January 31 next year the new system would be fully in place.
The first online auctions were launched by the Calcutta Tea Traders Association in November 2008. Ramesh also said that the web-based auctions will be in place for the whole country by September 2009.
This is a big change for how the tea industry in India operates. It might help India take back its title as largest tea producer in the world. With the online system, registered buyers and sellers can connect no matter where they’re located. And there’s hope that it will attract new tea sellers that currently don’t sell through the auction systems. So that might mean new tea for us.