Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Indian Tea Goes Digital...

No more catalogs, no mare gavels, no more auctioneers screaming going
once, twice...

"India's tea markets are going digital," says an article in the New
York Times. "Just as electronic trading rocked the floors of the New
York Stock Exchange and the Chicago Mercantile Exchange, the move to
computerized auctions promises to turn the tradition-bound world of
tea traders upside down. While tea growers and large multinationals
have welcomed the promise of computerized trading, many small tea
brokers fear an electronic exchange will mean the end of their
livelihoods. The government body that sets the rules for tea sales in
India, the Indian Tea Board, sees electronic trading as a way to help
planters who have been hit hard by low tea prices for much of the last
decade. Electronic trading is supposed to result in fairer prices and
lower transaction costs."

What has been going on since 1861 will change now , hopefully for the
better, in the tea state of Assam. According to the New York times,
"The main advantage of the computerized system, according to the Tea
Board, is that buyers can bid from anywhere, without having to be
physically in the trading hall — or even in the same city where the
tea is warehoused. "That means buyer participation will be more,
competition will be more," said H. N. Dwibedi, a consultant who has
been advising the Tea Board on computerized trading. "Greater
competition ensures that the true price is discovered."

India's previous attempts at automating tea trading electronically
were unsuccessful, hopefully this time around, things will be
smoother, more to ensure fair trade for the tea traders and to revive
the dwindling markets.

Read the full article at --

No comments: