14 January 1999
Japan to grow tea in Australia

ONE of Japans largest green tea producers is setting up a green tea plantation and processing plant in Australia.

Myrtleford, in Victoria, is entering into a A$5 million (£2m) venture with Ito En of Japan with the aim of beginning operations by 2002.

The plantation will eventually extend to 100ha (247.09 acres), or some 2.6m plants.

The venture will create work for local farmers with the first 100ha of green tea worth just over £600,000.

Local authorities hope to expand the crop as the processing plant expands.

Sales of green tea are booming in Japan and Ito En reported a 13% increase in group net profit to ¥2.7bn (£14.8m) on revenues up 14% to Y83.4bn.

  • Financial Times 14/01/99 page 40