Tea is the most enjoyed beverage in the world that bestows a sensory experience to its drinker. Its components have been repeatedly researched and it has undoubtedly proven itself to be one of the best drinks. It is consumed in huge quantities because of its unique aroma, taste and flavors. Even though the demand for tea in Asia and Europe have been considerably huge, instant tea has also continued to gain an equal market share among the new tea drinkers in the non-tea drinking countries.
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Instant tea is a soluble type of tea powder that is either roasted or grounded in form. It has recently gained popularity over the traditional style of consuming tea as it is easier and quicker to prepare. The grounded crushed leaves of tea are extracted along with hot water to derive the desired tea flavor and aroma. Furthermore, these tea extract is then dried either by spray drying or freeze drying to prepare and pack the tea powder in glass jars or sachets. Individuals worldwide are found accepting instant tea rather than the traditional one as it is helping them to save time and resources in preparing the originally brewed tea.
Instant tea market is observed to gain an unprecedented growth in the global market and has several driving factors that are increasing the acceptance of this market. Clearly, instant tea has been dominating the market because of its convenience over fresh tea Due to the recent change in the lifestyle and urbanization penetrating the developing regions, youngsters are preferring instant tea and changing the social trend. Moreover, due to its availability in sachets, instant tea can be carried and prepared at workplace or during travel.
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Simultaneously the hassle of disposing the leftover tea is also reduced on consumption of instant tea. Innovation is another driver in maintaining the perennial demand of instant tea in the market. Although, it’s high popularity in the market the tea industry is facing high competition and commodification in the environment due to the availability of substitute products in the market. Additionally, consumers falling in the lower income group category find it difficult to buy and experience the culture to sipping a sophisticated beverage. Nevertheless, tea will always maintain its popularity as a widely consumed beverage globally.
The instant tea market can be segmented on the basis of types and distribution channel. By product, the instant tea is available either spray dried or freeze dried. Under spray dried the tea extract gets sprayed with stream of hot air in a cylindrical tower. In this process the quality and aroma of the tea is preserved better. On the other hand, freeze drying involves the tea extract to be frozen below -40°C and then crushed into granules. Even in this product type, the aroma and flavor is maintained due to low temperature and gentle drying conditions. The evolving retail concept all over the world has channelized the successful distribution of instant tea in to the market through departmental stores, hypermarkets, convenience stores, specialty stores and online retail.