High Commissioner Rohitha Bogollagama meets with European Speciality Tea Association

High Commissioner Rohitha Bogollagama meets with European Speciality Tea Association

In line with Sri Lanka's participation at the International Food Exhibition (IFE) 2024 held at London- ExCell on 26 March 2024, High Commissioner of Sri Lanka to the United Kingdom Rohitha Bogollagama  joined by Chairman of Sri Lanka Tea Board Niraj de Mell met with the board directors of the European Speciality Tea Association (ESTA) at the High Commission of Sri Lanka in London.The meeting was also attended by Chairman of Ceylon Artisanal Tea Association (CATA) Simon Nihal Bell.

High Commissioner Bogollagama welcomed the members of the ESTA and CATA and appreciated their commitment into the speciality tea worldwide, the assistance and the ideas being generated in promoting Ceylon Tea, while closely associating with the authorities in Sri Lanka and the tea industry in Sri Lanka.

It was discussed in detailed  that Sri Lanka needs to refocus in promoting and regaining the UK tea market through various collaborations and joint actions based on the dynamics and the consumer preferences of the tea market in the UK. Mr. Mel requested  the ESTA to be the link point in regaining Ceylon tea market in general and invited  them to attend at the International Tea Convention in Colombo in July 2024.

Towards that, taking actions to upgrade the quality, standards, and the new technology, innovations in the tea industry while protecting the indigenous methods and  ethical practices, focused manufacturing and branding and speciality tea promotions in the UK were discussed. The ESTA presented a draft MOU in this regard to the Sri Lanka Tea Board and it was agreed to finalize the MoU through continued interactions. An establishing of a Working Committee to achieve the objectives of the MoU was proposed by the High Commissioner Bogollagama together with required deep  studies and researches.

President of the ESTA Nigel Melican together with its Executive Director David Veal and the other directors and members who attended at this interactive meeting mentioned that they are pleased to work with the High Commission to take forward the ideas generated to a strategy called "Ceylon Tea, to make fashionable again"

The Chairman of the Ceylon Artisanal Tea Association contributed with important ideas for the development of the speciality tea sector from the Sri Lanka's view point.

At the end of the meeting, the Directors and the members of the ESTA attended at the Ceylon Tea and Sri Lanka Food Business Networking dinner reception held at the High Commission.  The reception was attended by nearly 100 members of the UK tea and food trade, senior UK officials including the Department of Business and Trade and the Commonwealth related bodies, trade chamber representatives, media and influencers, and  Sri Lankan exhibitors who showcased their products at the IFE London 2024.

High Commission of Sri Lanka


01 April 2024


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