EBRD donors visit tea packaging company in Morocco

By Volker Ahlemeyer

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SITI grows and goes green with donor support

At the very start of the EBRD Annual Meeting and Business Forum in Marrakech, the EBRD donor community gathered for their annual get-together in 2022. It was the first time that a physical meeting took place after a three year’s break due to the Coronavirus pandemic.

The donors had the opportunity to see for themselves the impact of the Bank’s work and their generous financial support in Morocco. SITI is a tea packaging producer which started as a small venture in the 1970s. By now, it has grown to become one of the global leaders in this niche market. 

How do you like your tea bag?

Fragrant flavours welcomed the participants when entering the company factory – verbena, mint and various other colourful tea mixes, packed professionally at modern production lines. Different tea quality and size or marketing strategies will determine what kind of tea bag a seller may want to use. SITI produces three main types: double chamber, hand-stitched or Japanese style. 

But how does a company grow and makes sure that it is fit for the future?

Firstly, a tea packaging producer should go green. This is why the Bank’s Morocco Sustainable Energy Financing Facility (MorSEFF) worked with the SITI to improve its production processes and help it to save energy and money. Secondly, the company benefitted from effective expert advice. The Advice for Small Businesses programme helped the company to develop its value chain and to grow from small family business to major player.

Both programmes benefit from financial support from the European Union, with the latter one having recently be joined by the Green Climate Fund too.

From family enterprise to global player

By now, the company stitches more than 1.5 million tea bags per day, employing around 400 people. SITI SITI's clients are distributed all over the globe, from North America to Europe and East Asia – with many donor representatives recognising that tea packaged in Morocco, in this very factory, is sold in their countries too.

However, there was no need to travel back: the company also offers a flavour of its own production at a shop close to its headquarters.

A day of discussions in Marrakech came to an end as it should do: with a mix of bright Moroccan colours, combined with only the best flavours of the world, and a real-life example of how to get ready for the future.

 

 

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