Busted?


One of the intentionally aged teas, Pu-Erh has a loyal following.

Re: Busted?

Postby auhckw » Sep 6th, '10, 10:58



Are you referring to the same item at a different price? If yes, unfortunately this is not surprising.

Few tea person i've spoken said for puerh, the exact same wrapping can be of the different tea, which makes it sometimes quite scary to purchase tea from untrusted sellers. So choosing a reputable seller and tasting it is very important
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Re: Busted?

Postby puerhking » Sep 6th, '10, 11:14

That's one of the most absurd discrepancies I've ever seen. Even the Norbu price is high considering you can get the '08 for $15 at several ebay stores. That's just bad business. Once your customer found out the "real" price they would never buy from you again.
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Re: Busted?

Postby alan logan » Sep 6th, '10, 11:15

both norbu and CS would baffle you after you see this:
http://item.taobao.com/item.htm?id=6971722424

should the question of "fake" arise:
- I would think a byproduct not very likely to be counterfeited, all the more as lao cha tou does not seem to be very researched in China -but I may be wrong in these assumptions.
- now admitting this was counterfeit, even though this is supercompetitive taobao, this gives an idea of what this product may cost on primary retail market. i am not opposed to mark up, but honestly such prices for a mere (2years') byproduct are ridiculous. I guess somebody bought the "it's a rare and very particular tea" story behind the counter.

anyway, just to get bigger picture, i did a bit more browsing with supersexytaobao and with these key characters: 老茶头 大益 (lao cha tou da yi --yes, babelcarp, copy and paste) here are the results :

http://search.taobao.com/search?q=%C0%C ... 4%F3%D2%E6

adding "07", here are the results:
http://search.taobao.com/search?q=%C0%C ... 3%D2%E6+07

not to say that taobao is touchstone to set "fair" prices on other markets.
but mass market pu er is as often as not beyond overpriced in western retail, even considering cost for import --whereas high end approaches stratospheric everywhere, this is far more democratic really :mrgreen:
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Re: Busted?

Postby gingkoseto » Sep 6th, '10, 11:55

alan logan wrote:both norbu and CS would baffle you after you see this:
http://item.taobao.com/item.htm?id=6971722424


I am not familiar with this taobao seller. But some other taobao sellers I am more comfortable with typically sell this tea for prices twice or three times as much as this one, ending up with ¥75-120. Sure it's still much cheaper than $32. But this is a half a pound thing, and in EMS it cost the same as anything within 500g when shipping from China, which is about $22 with a deep discount (a price from an agent only but not from official postal office). So I won't blame Norbu for their pricing.
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Re: Busted?

Postby alan logan » Sep 6th, '10, 12:08

gingkoseto wrote:
alan logan wrote:both norbu and CS would baffle you after you see this:
http://item.taobao.com/item.htm?id=6971722424


I am not familiar with this taobao seller. But some other taobao sellers I am more comfortable with typically sell this tea for prices twice or three times as much as this one, ending up with ¥75-120. Sure it's still much cheaper than $32. But this is a half a pound thing, and in EMS it cost the same as anything within 500g when shipping from China, which is about $22 with a deep discount (a price from an agent only but not from official postal office). So I won't blame Norbu for their pricing.


as you may see on the other link, there are various prices on taobao for this product. some of them may even be considered "too high" by a chinese buyer (or any buyer who knows what's what)... and others suspiciously low.
Now, if you buy one 250g brick on taobao you are not going to use EMS, and I would even think if you buy on taobao you are not going to buy merely 250g.
But your point about shipping cost is nevertheless right : shipping is proportionally expensive. however, if you choose the right option and buy quantity that justifies having product travel so far, you come to a cost that is far below western retail. try and do the math about this brick with more adequate parameters, the result will be far preferable.

Understand me, I would not blame Norbu: all I am saying is that they may themselves have bought too high for a product this category. It happens. Plus, I know that a business in our countries means costs+taxes. But even so, this product is everything but a best buy at +$30.
(not to speak of +$140 of course)
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Re: Busted?

Postby gingkoseto » Sep 6th, '10, 12:25

alan logan wrote:
gingkoseto wrote:
alan logan wrote:both norbu and CS would baffle you after you see this:
http://item.taobao.com/item.htm?id=6971722424


I am not familiar with this taobao seller. But some other taobao sellers I am more comfortable with typically sell this tea for prices twice or three times as much as this one, ending up with ¥75-120. Sure it's still much cheaper than $32. But this is a half a pound thing, and in EMS it cost the same as anything within 500g when shipping from China, which is about $22 with a deep discount (a price from an agent only but not from official postal office). So I won't blame Norbu for their pricing.


as you may see on the other link, there are various prices on taobao for this product. some of them may even be considered "too high" by a chinese buyer.
Now, if you buy one 250g brick on taobao you are not going to use EMS, and I would even think if you buy on taobao you are not going to buy merely 250g.
But your point about shipping cost is nevertheless right : shipping is proportionally expensive. however, if you choose the right option and buy quantity that justifies having product travel so far, you come to a cost that is far below western retail. try and do the math about this brick with more adequate parameters, the result will be far preferable.

Understand me, I would not blame Norbu: all I am saying is that they may themselves have bought too high for a product this category. It happens. Plus, I know that a business in our countries means costs+taxes. But even so, this product is everything but a best buy at +$30.
(not to speak of +$140 of course)


Hi Alan, I understand what you mean, and your analysis on costs are pretty much right. Unfortunately there are all these additional costs when a market is relatively small (need more tea drinkers :D ) and located far from the source region (the shipping from China is both expensive and with limited options).

I guess a lot of people would still choose to buy from domestic sellers with a higher price, for the convenience, customer service, and possibly warranty. But I think you made a good point that it's better off for buyers to know more information about costs involved and differences of costs between source market and western market, no matter where they decide to buy.
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Re: Busted?

Postby alan logan » Sep 6th, '10, 12:34

yes, you are right Ginko, many parameters must be considered, and particularly that the retailers may sometimes suffer marked up cost eg if they don't know all the ropes on the original market (or any other reason). Retailing is a complex job. Moreover, the question of value is itself a complex one !
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Re: Busted?

Postby MarshalN » Sep 6th, '10, 19:13

Yeah, but not so complex that a laochatou is $150. That's just crazy.
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Re: Busted?

Postby pb2q » Sep 6th, '10, 19:23

The $150 CN must be a mistake.
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Re: Busted?

Postby alan logan » Sep 6th, '10, 19:35

it has been online for at least a few weeks...

EDIT
and confirmed after asking. not a mistake.
Last edited by alan logan on Sep 7th, '10, 10:17, edited 3 times in total.
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Re: Busted?

Postby IPT » Sep 6th, '10, 20:55

Wow! That's insane!
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Re: Busted?

Postby teaskeptic » Sep 9th, '10, 12:49

alan logan wrote:it has been online for at least a few weeks...

EDIT
and confirmed after asking. not a mistake.


What did you ask them exactly? Did you tell them the price at Norbu?
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Re: Busted?

Postby alan logan » Sep 9th, '10, 13:53

teaskeptic wrote:
alan logan wrote:it has been online for at least a few weeks...

EDIT
and confirmed after asking. not a mistake.


What did you ask them exactly? Did you tell them the price at Norbu?


I asked whether the price mentioned for the brick (with link to the webpage) was actually this price, and they answered yes.
I did not mention any other price because I only wished to have the info and check if it might have been a typing mistake.
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Re: Busted?

Postby MarshalN » Sep 9th, '10, 20:26

Lao chatou is basically leftover from the cooked puerh process. It's not even worth $15 a brick, never mind $150
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