Overcoming the pandemic, have you wondered what were the best tea exporters in the world last year? 


The Covid-19 pandemic has caused numerous challenges to the import-export activities in the world. 2022 was the year that witnessed a gradual recovery after the lockdown policy. International trade, including tea export, has been recovering. In this article, let’s explore the best tea exporters in the world in 2022. 

China – the leading tea exporter 

China is well-known as the cradle of tea. With a long-standing tea culture, China is not only strong in tea production, but it also dominates in tea exporting. In the last four years, the Covid-19 pandemic has negatively affected the global economy. Although China’s government has implemented the Zero Covid policy, this nation is still the largest tea exporter in the world. 

In 2022, total tea export volume of China was about 375,300 tonnes with the value of US$ 2.1 billion, which is 1,59% higher than last year and more than a quarter of the global figure. China exports various kinds of tea, including green tea, black tea, oolong tea, scented tea, and so on. Among them, green tea is the major segment, accounting for 83.6% of the total tea export. Most Chinese exported tea came to Northern and Western African nations, with the leading importer being Morocco.  

China is the leading tea exporter


While China is the biggest green tea exporter, the leading black tea exporter is Kenya. Kenya is also the largest African country in the tea industry. Compared to 388 million kg in 2021, tea export volume of Kenya reached 410 million kg in 2022. Having benefited from the weak shilling of this nation, Kenyan tea exporting brought in more than US$ 1.32 billion last year, ranking the second.

Key export markets of Kenya tea are Pakistan, Egypt, Yemen, Sudan, and the United Arab Emirates. The average price per tonne of exported tea continues to rise since the falling of Kenyan shilling in 2022. Until May 2023, it reached its highest value in the last eight years.

Kenya is the largest black tea exporter

Sri Lanka 

The third largest tea exporter in 2022 belonged to Sri Lanka, with a total volume of tea being 250.19 million kg. Compared to 2021, the tea volume witnessed a decrease of 25.82 million kg in all categories, including bulk tea, tea bags, and packed tea. Along with that is the decline in the total value, at US$ 1,277 million

Sri Lanka is famous for its signature Ceylon tea with distinctive aroma and taste. About half of the tea export of this nation is in value added forms, especially tea in packets and tea in bags. In 2022, Sri Lanka exported tea to over 140 countries. Among them, the largest importer of  Sri Lanka tea is Iraq, followed by Russia, the United Arab Emirates, Turkey, and Iran.  

Sri Lanka
Sri Lanka’s ceylon tea


Overcoming the difficulties in 2022, India witnessed an increase of nearly 18% in the total tea export volume, at about 230 million kg. Although there is a significant reduction in Iran’s purchases, demand from Russia, CIS countries, and West Asia has grown, leading to rise of Indian tea shipments. Key importers of Indian tea are the United Arab Emirates, Russia, the United States, Iran, and the United Kingdom, with the famous tea being Assam and Darjeeling tea. 

However, the picture for 2023 is predicted to be not promising. The decline in demand of some traditional markets, such as Europe, and payment issues with Iran negatively affect tea exporting of India. Besides, the Gulf countries and the recovery of Sri Lanka’s crop, the Russia-Ukraine conflict also contribute to this outlook. 

India is still one of the five biggest tea exporter

United Arab Emirates

For many years, tea has been a staple of Arab culture. The United Arab Emirates is one of the largest global hubs in the tea export market. In 2021, UAE exported about US$ 336 million worth of tea. In 2022, the total tea export value was expected to continue to increase. UAE’s are present in about 154 countries around the world, and main importers of the UAE’s tea are Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Iraq, Russia, and China. 


Tea exports account for about 0.073% of the total export of Poland. In 2022, Poland was the leading tea exporter in Central and Eastern Europe, with the total number of exported tea valued at US$ 252 million. Although this figure went down by 3.85% compared with 2021, this nation was still among top tea exporters in the world. Major destinations of Polish tea were Frane, the United States, Australia, Sweden, and the United Kingdom. Among various kinds of tea, black tea was the main exported type, with more than 76% of the total tea volume. 


Vietnam is one of the biggest tea producers and exporters in the world. Vietnam’s tea exports in 2022 recorded impressive numbers, which rose in both volume and value. The total volume and value of tea exports in 2022 were 146 million kg and US$ 237 million, an increase of 15.3% in volume and 10.7% in value compared to 2021 – a double digit growth. Among 74 importers, the main destinations of Vietnamese are easy-to-please markets such as Pakistan, Russia, China, and Indonesia. 

Vietnam’s tea export recorded a double digit growth in 2022


Tea products from Germany have gained the favor of other markets and gone beyond national boundaries. Despite the pandemic and crisis in 2021 and 2022, the tea industry in Germany still witnessed some positive figures. Germany experienced high demand from international markets, especially Europe. More than 21 thousand tonnes of tea was exported to over 100 countries in 2022, valued at US$ 225 million


When it comes to Japan, you might immediately think of green tea, which is also the leading segment in Japan’s exported tea. Shipments of Japanese tea, in general, recorded about US$ 170 million in 2022. Moreover, green tea witnessed the largest increase, about 50% higher in 2017, and it continues to rise in the first months of 2023, including high-priced matcha powder. 

The United States is the largest destination of Japanese green tea, accounting for 34% of the total tea exports, followed by Germany and Taiwan. The increase in exporting tea is thanks to the expansion of green tea cultivation area, the support of the Japanese government, and growing demand for matcha in the world. 

Japan’s famous matcha powder

United Kingdom 

In addition to being one of the world’s biggest tea consumers, the United Kingdom is also in the top 10 tea exporters. However, the tea export value in 2022 was reduced over 9% compared to 2021, at US$ 123 million, with the total value being approximately 17 thousand tonnes. The largest tea importers of the United Kingdom were Ireland, United States, Canada, Netherlands, and France. 


Above is the list of best tea exporters in 2022 with the largest one being China. However, there are still lots of variations in 2023 depending on the demand of global markets. Follow FGC news to update the latest information on the world tea market.

About Future Generation Co.,Ltd

Future Generation Company Limited is one of the largest beverage suppliers in Vietnam, with 26 years of experience in production and export. FGC is equipped with modern machines such as Hotfill PET and TetraPak, ensuring high-capacity production. FGC strives to achieve our mission to become Vietnam’s leading healthy beverage company. Our factories also meet international standards such as ISO, HACCP, etc. In addition, we constantly innovate our machinery system, strengthen production capacity, and increase productivity. 

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