Economy, Domestic Economy

Investment Opportunities Series: Herbal Tea Production

Investment Opportunities Series: Herbal Tea Production
Investment Opportunities Series: Herbal Tea Production

As Iranian households become more familiar with the benefits of herbal tea, demand shows a rising trajectory.

Consequently, the industrial production of herbal teas has gathered pace in Iran to tap this potentially lucrative market.

The Persian daily Forsat-e Emrooz recently published an article on production of herbal teas and the domestic sector’s investment potential.

The country has high potential for herbal tea production, as herbal plants can be easily acquired at cheap prices and good quality.

There are many advantages of investing in the production of herbal teas in Iran, in view of the considerable overseas demand for Iranian herbal plants, with Turkey, Iraq and Armenia being regular customers.

With the right processing and packaging, export of herbal teas can be a profitable business.

  Production Process

Herbal teas are usually produced in 500-gram packages or in the form of teabags. The production process comprises collecting the herbal plants, transferring them to the factory, sorting them and then disinfecting them before they are dried and packed. In order to produce teabags, a grinding step is also required.

Quality control is paramount in the production of herbal tea. All excess or burned plants and mud and dirt must be removed in the sorting process. Due to the sensitivity of the plants to moisture and changes in temperature, they must be constantly controlled in the disinfection and drying process so that they do not change in color or taste.

The plants that can be used in the production of herbal tea are green tea, borage, cinnamon, ginger, oregano, mint, rhyme, hibiscus, cardamom, chamomile, licorice, fennel and blueberries to name a few.

The highest demand is for green tea, borage, hibiscus and cinnamon.

  Investment Requirements

According to Sajjad Hassani, a player of the field, a plot of land is needed to set up the factory. A 300-square-meter piece of land is required for constructing a warehouse, a laboratory, a production line and the administrative office.

It is more economical if the production facilities are established in provinces with a large output of herbal plants, such as Hamedan, Kermanshah, Lorestan, Mazandaran and Gilan, says the expert.

Hassani added that the machinery required can be easily purchased in the country at reasonable prices. The main equipment needed for producing at least 30 tons of herbal teas per year comprises a sorting machine, a drying machine, a grinder and packaging equipment.

Purchasing the machinery costs close to $55,000 and about $13,000 are needed for acquiring the raw material needed for production.

A herbalist, a machinery expert, a manager and a driver are also required for distribution.

The needed permits can be obtained from the Ministry of Health and the Ministry of Industries, Mining and Trade.

“The advantage of investment in herbal tea is that the production line is quite similar to the common tea production line, so if marketing fails and things start to go south, the production process can easily turn toward tea production, which is always in demand,” Hassani said.