Sri Lanka’s Heladiv Foods Plc opens unit in California to distribute tea concentrates and specialty products
HVA Foods Plc of Sri Lanka, which is known for its Heladiv branded ready-to-drink tea, has reportedly announced that it has opened a unit in California in the USA to distribute tea concentrates and specialty products.
“The first trial shipment has reached the US and marketing has commenced with a view to effectively penetrating the US market, using tea concentrates and specialty teas,” HVA Foods Chairman, Rohan Fernando has reportedly told shareholders in the annual report.
HVA Foods has expanded from traditional tea products into tea concentrates, which are used for iced tea, cordials and other tea-based beverages.
“A new range of products is being developed including energy drinks, herbal infusions and gift tea items aimed at the highly advanced new beverages, making a positive impact in the beverage sector,” Fernando has said.
According to reports, HVA Foods had used a partial grant from the Asian Development Bank to set up a Rs. 100 million rupee tea extraction plant in 2011 to create tea concentrates.
The beverages are now produced by four outsourced service providers, after the group disposed of its manufacturing facilities, except for the extraction plant, over the past financial year.
The expansion of Sri Lanka’s Heladiv branded tea products to the US market is indicative of the growth potential of Sri Lankan companies. Sri Lanka’s plantation sector has been recording a growth rate after experiencing several setbacks in the past few years mainly in the form of a drought. Sri Lanka’s tea exports now mainly consist of values added products. Foreign companies interested in doing business with Sri Lanka could look at forming partnerships with companies that are looking at expanding into foreign markets. They could also look at investment opportunities in Sri Lanka’s tea sector.
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