Tea turned out to be the most popular beverage among Russians: the results of the research

Tea turned out to be the most popular beverage among Russians: the results of the research


Moscow. 11 May 2021. - According to the research conducted by the “R.I.M. PN” communication agency among the residents of cities with more than one million inhabitants, tea is the most popular beverage in Russia. Two-thirds of the respondents consume it daily. Kenyan tea is considered to be one of the most popular tea in Russia along with other commonly consumed tea varieties, originated in Ceylon, India, China and Russia (Krasnodar). Respondents appreciate the taste of Kenyan tea, while experts recognize its high potential for the nearest future.


The research showed that almost all respondents (97%) drink tea, and two-thirds of them do it every day. Coffee is still popular, but only 45% of respondents prefer drinking it every day. At the same time many of those surveyed (48%) consume cocoa no more than two or three times a month.

Russians mostly prefer black tea (80% of the audience chose this option), particularly in tea bags (72%). Moreover, both classic tea and flavored tea are equally popular - 53% vs. 45%, respectively.

Green tea is usually consumed by almost half of consumers (44%). Both classic tea and flavored tea are equally popular (26% and 28%, respectively). 

Herbal tea was chosen by only 19%; loose leaf tea - by 42%; granulated tea - by 6%1.

A classic taste of black tea is preferred mostly by men. Green tea, particularly its flavored blends, is preferred by women and young people aged 18-24 years.

Russians prefer to buy tea mainly in supermarkets, hypermarkets and convenience stores. About 12% of respondents purchase tea in specialized stores, 7% - order it online, the same number of the audience buy tea in discounters. The TOP-5 most popular brands include Greenfield, Lipton, Tess, Richard and "Prinsessa Nuri". 

The main criteria for selecting tea among residents of Russian cities with population of over one million people are the taste characteristics, such as type (black, green, herbal) and taste (no additives or flavored). Such characteristics as quality, cost, personal consumption experience are also important.

Most of the respondents do not pay attention to the country of origin of tea, this criterion is important only for a quarter of the respondents. The TOP-5 most popular tea varieties in Russia includes Ceylon tea, Indian tea, Chinese tea, Russian (Krasnodar) tea and Kenyan tea. The latter is gaining popularity in Russia, despite the fact that the producer is relatively new on the market (unlike tea originated in other regions tea of Kenyan origin began to spread widely around the world since the second half of the 20th century). While 23% of respondents have heard about Kenyan tea, 9% - buy it.



1Others chose an “other” option.


Experts believe that Kenyan tea has a high potential in Russia. Those who know about it or have tried it, appreciate its rich taste and high quality. Kenyan tea is perceived by customers as an environmentally friendly, unusual and premium product. This image is facilitated by the special conditions for tea cultivation in this country. Areas in the west and east of the country are composed of the mountains and high grounds. Alpine tea has specific characteristics that determine its rich aroma, taste and color intensity. Tea grows on volcanic soils rich in minerals, while due to the tropical climate it can be harvested all year round. The most recognizable are the Kenyan tea varieties from the Greenfield, Richard, Tess, Lipton and Ahmad tea lines. The list also includes "Chay Mayskiy", "Zhemchuzhina Nila" and Maitre. 

Currently, Kenya is considered to be one of the largest tea producers. Unlike others represented in the top five, in Kenya about 92% of the produced tea is exported. Russians associate this African country with a unique nature (52% of respondents chose this option), as well as a unique culture and the unique traditions (44%), while the interviewees do not have any specific characteristics in mind. The respondents are also aware about sporting achievements - nearly half of those surveyed perceive Kenya as home to the world's fastest runners (45%). Slightly more than one-third of the audience believe Kenya to be one of the best places for safari and excursion tourism.

Kenyan tea is mostly popular among Moscow residents (51% of those surveyed). It is consumed mainly by women (58%) (mainly married women with children (71%), stably employed (67%)). 

“Kenya is one of the largest exporters of tea and the amount of tea produced there is much more than locals can drink. The secret is that tea grows in the western and eastern parts of the Great Rift Valley, which is a part of the ridge that runs across Kenya from north to south. This is the only place in the world where tea is harvested all year round due to the proper level of humidity, proximity to the equator and the peculiarities of the soil, which does not require any fertilizers and has the necessary balance of nutrients. Therefore, the Kenyan land is happy to share its wealth with other countries, including Russia. The popularity of Kenyan tea among Russians is really growing, because of its memorable, distinct floral character and a tart taste. This tea is also the sweetest of all black tea varieties which have an intense infusion”, the leader of the tea tasting team of the "MAY" company Kirill Tatarintsev said.

According to the general director of the “Rusteacoffee” Association, Ramaz Chanturia, “In recent years, Kenya has been gradually gaining momentum in the tea trade with Russia, being firmly ranked 3rd behind India and Sri Lanka, while surpassing some traditional suppliers, such as China and Vietnam. By the end of 2020, Kenya has supplied more than 24 thousand tons of tea to Russia, which is 16.5% of the total balance of tea imports to our country”.

«The speed of conquering the Russian market by Kenyan tea is worth noting - in 1998, tea import from this country to Russia was very insignificant; in 2010 the share of Kenyan tea in the Russian market was 8%; in 2020 Kenya has become one of the three leading tea importers to Russia. There is no doubt that Kenyan tea has a significant potential for further development in the Russian market. In terms of popularity, tea originated from Kenya is still inferior to Indian tea and Ceylon tea, which are the most popular among Russians. However, the fact that Kenyan tea is included in the assortment lines of the most popular brands (Greenfield, TESS) gives every reason to believe that interest in tea from Kenya will increase”, said Maria Drabova, director of corporate communications of the “Orimi” Group of Companies.

The research involved residents of cities with population of over one million people, including Moscow, Saint Petersburg, Ekaterinburg and Nizhny Novgorod. Men and women aged between 18 and 52 years old of middle- and higher-middle-income were interviewed.

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