What is Ceylon Tea ?Tea is one of the most commonly consumed drinks in the world. This drink from heaven is so popular that it even has it’s own time – Tea Time
Tea is one of the most commonly consumed drinks in the world. Before breakfast, after breakfast, in the noon and even in the evening, tea can be the perfect drink. This drink from heaven is so popular that it even has it's own time - Tea Time. Around the world about 2 billion people drink tea in the morning. The world manufactures around 3 billion tons of tea for consumption of a year. 1 pound of loose tea will be sufficient to make about 200 cups of delicious and refreshing tea.
So, how did this famous 'Ceylon Tea' come into being? Surprising as it is, the birth of tea was rather a story of coffee. While the coffee-based economy of Ceylon was facing a tragic downfall in the 1880's, a Scottish planter named James Taylor experimented with this new plant in his formerly-coffee estate, Loolkandura.
He was experimenting with tea. His experiments were a success. Over 300,000 acres of dead coffee plantations were ripped off and was ready to be home to tea plantations. And after many struggling years, about a decade later Sri Lanka was again there with a new signature delicacy - Ceylon Tea.
Soon, Sri Lanka was flourishing in the worldwide tea business and even after their independence from the British in 1948, tea plantations remained a blessing. Even to this day, tea exportation brings a large proportion of income to the country. Ceylon tea is a true gift.
Why is Ceylon Tea so special ?
Ceylon tea falls into three main categories; Low-grown, high-grown and medium-grown depending on the altitude where the tea is grown. they differentiate in taste, colour, aroma and several other components and produces distinct tea-drinking experiences. Ceylon tea has always been considered the world's finest throughout the years due to the attention it has grown towards itself in the past years.
Sri Lanka has also been the official tea supplier in international events such as 1980 Moscow Olympics, 1982 12th Commonwealth Games in Brisbane and 1987 Expo 88 in Australia. These international events grew tons of attention to Ceylon tea and helped to spread the word about it.
Ceylon Tea has proved its unique taste, aroma and elegance over the years and that is why many regular customers are not willing to turn into alternatives. Actually, there are no alternatives to the world's finest.
Sri Lanka has the perfect climate to grow pure Ceylon tea which can be matched by none. The optimum humidity, cool temperatures and abundant sunshine with timely rainfall in the plantation areas has made Sri Lanka the only place for production of the best-quality tea.
Branded 'Ceylon Tea'
The branding of "Ceylon Tea" has placed it's branding purely on the quality of the tea. The manufacturers are allowed to use the bran name "Ceylon Tea" along with its famous Lion Logo only if the entire plantation and manufacturing has been done in Sri Lanka. Sri Lankan Tea board has laid a series of strict quality standards to be passed in order to any tea to pass as 'Ceylon Tea'.
If the tea is blended or mixed with tea or any other additive from any other country of the world other than Sri Lanka, that tea disqualifies from being 'Ceylon Tea'. Ceylon black tea, white tea and green tea is available in the international and as well as the local market. Ceylon White Tea is the most expensive among the three.
Ceylon tea packets have the slogan 'Pure Ceylon Tea - Packed in Sri Lanka' as an assurance of quality and origin. The world has hardly put down its demand for Pure Ceylon Tea as it has been continuously keeping up to their standard without any drops.
Where does Ceylon Tea grow?
According to the historians and researchers, the origin of tea was in China nearly 5000 years ago. But it was Sri Lanka who attracted popularity towards it through their quality production
As you read before, Ceylon tea growth fall into three distinctive categories. High-grown tea is grown at 4000 ft above the sea level while Mid-grown tea grows between 4000 ft and 3000 ft altitude. And low-grown tea grows below 2000 ft above sea level. These three types of tea has differences in taste and aroma but not in the quality. Some tea can be really heavy in the taste and some are light and mild. But all Ceylon teas are full of flavor and irresistible aromatic quality.
There are a few areas in Sri Lanka which has taken up tea plantation as their main means of earning.
- Nuwara Eliya
- Udu Pussellawa
If one travels in the up country of Sri Lanka, vast areas of tea plantations in glowing green colour can be seen in an abundance. They not only bring revenue to the country but also add natural beauty to the island. Those tea plantations have become a source of tourist attraction now.
Are there different types of Ceylon Tea?
Yes, there are 3 main types of Ceylon Tea. That is black tea which is the most common one, white tea the most expensive one and the green tea which is the healthiest one. All these types are produced in Sri Lanka and put into local and international markets who have been faithful buyers for several numbers of consecutive years, categorically because of the best quality of the product.
Ceylon Black Tea
Sri Lanka is the most famous country in the whole world for Black Tea. It can be consumed as a pure drink and as a additive in other blended drinks. It normally grows in all the altitude types in the country and it is the most common one as well.
Ceylon Green Tea
The world has gone into a 'being-healthy' trend. People who are concerned with blood sugar levels, high blood pressure, cholesterol and weight problems are tempted to drink green tea as it has several components which provided effective remedies for the health problems which were mentioned before. And the Sri Lankan Green tea has a more nuttier and pungent taste with a hint of malty-ness in it. Sri Lanka has about four main grades for Green Tea; OP (Whole Leaf), Gun Powder, Fannings and Dust.
Ceylon White Tea
This is the most expensive of it all. Ceylon White tea has been divided into two grades.
- Silver Tips / Silver Needle
- Golden Tips / Golden Needle
The specialty of Ceylon White Tea is that it is grown, harvested and rolled purely by the dedicated crafty hands of Sri Lankan men and women. The leaves are dried and withered in sun instead of in machines. All this organic authenticity makes it a bit more expensive than the other two types of tea. Ceylon White Tea has a noticeable melting and light liquoring taste with a touch of a honey-ish flavor.
Loyal buyers of Ceylon Tea
Ceylon Tea has been the most famous in Russia and Middle Eastern countries. By June of 2019 Sri Lanka has exported approximately 19, 662 MT of tea to Iraq alone. Turkey, Iran, Libya, Azerbaijan, Syria and UAE have been among the loyal buyers of Ceylon Tea. Russia, China and Germany also has a ton of Ceylon Tea lovers which has made them buy it by the bulk.
Iraq has been the number one buyer of Ceylon Tea for years and Russia along with China has been long-term buyers as well. Sri Lanka has created such a loyal customer base, mesmerizing them with the indulging taste and the quality of Ceylon tea. They have never stopped buying from Sri Lanka and day by day, new buyers join the journey never to leave.
All in all, Pure Ceylon Tea is the symbol of quality. As they say, "What Rolls Royce is to cars, Rolex is to watches, Havana is to cigars and Scotland is to whiskey; Ceylon is to tea". And once you take a sip of that heavenly drink, I guarantee that it will never be a one-time thing. You will want it for the rest of your life. Literally, Ceylon tea is heaven in the tip of your tongue.
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