lørdag 27. juni 2020

Intellectual property theft: what Chinese and British firms should worry about

A British scientist, concealing his employment by a multinational trader, gained access to a processing plant in Fujian and obtained critical trade secrets. These profited his company and ultimately stimulated the British economy.The scientist was Robert Fortune, the employer was the East India Company, the year 1848 and the processing plant a Chinese tea factory.

Tea manufacturing is convoluted: cultivation, picking, drying, heating, rolling, firing, sorting and packing, with specific methods for each stage. The process had been refined over centuries; outsiders could not discover it by experimentation. So the East India Company cheated.