Tea, specifically called tea powder is the powdered form of cured or dried young tea leaves which is used to make tea, the second most consumed beverage in the world after water and followed by coffee, beer, soups, energy drinks and vodka. Its scientific name is ‘Camellia sinensis’ and belongs to the botanical family ‘Theaceae’.
Tea is supposed to have been discovered in 2737 B.C by the Chinese emperor Shennong as he was sitting under a tree while his servant was boiling water for him and some leaves from the tree were blown into the boiling water making it aromatic and attractive. However, at first, tea was used as a medicinal beverage prepared by boiling fresh young tea leaves in water. And it was only around 3rd-century CE that the tea had begun to be consumed widely as an energizing drink, and Yunnan province in China is considered as the birthplace of tea.
Today, tea is a common daily beverage which is easily available throughout the world. Though the tea is available in more than 3000 varieties, all of them come from a single tree. The variety or flavour of the tea depends on the type of tea leaves used and the processing methods or the level of oxidation. There are six main varieties of tea: white tea, green tea, yellow tea, black tea, oolong tea and dark tea.
The tea powders, depending on the variety are found in different colours like green, black or brown. There are two types of tea powder: Instant tea powder and the ordinary tea powder. It is also available in the form of tea bags that are more convenient to be used for making tea.
Tea plants, normally grow up to two metres in height and take around three years to be ready for harvest. The plants require sandy and acidic soils with good drainage and warm and humid climates with sufficient rainfall for their best growth and yield. Usually, the harvest is done twice a year and the time varies depending on the regions and climatic conditions.
Tea is a healthy energizing beverage which can boost energy levels as it contains a moderate amount of caffeine. Tea also contains calcium, potassium, zinc, manganese, thiamin, vitamin B6, riboflavin, niacin, and folate. Tea is purported to boost immunity strength, treat inflammation and heart diseases and even prevent certain types of cancer.
At present, the largest producer and consumer of tea powder is China, and other main producers are India, Kenya, Sri Lanka, Turkey, Indonesia, Japan and Vietnam. The largest exporter also is China, followed by India, Kenya and Sri Lanka. The main importers are Pakistan, the US, the UK, China, Germany, Egypt, France and Japan.
In India, the largest producer of tea is Assam, followed by West Bengal, Tamil Nadu, Kerala, Himachal Pradesh and Karnataka.
Some of the major trading markets of tea powder in India:
Assam (Jorhat, Kamrup, Guwahati, Sonitpur, Golaghat)
West Bengal (Siliguri, Kolkata, Jalpaiguri)
Tamil Nadu (Coimbatore, Coonoor, Chennai)
Kerala (Idukki, Kochi, Munnar)
Names of tea powder in different Indian languages:
Hindi Chaai paudar
Tamil Teyilai tul
*Take necessary precautions while giving money or product in advance.