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Tea Production

Updated: Dec 22, 2022


Tea Production
Tea Production

Tea is one of the most popular drinks in the world, enjoyed by people of all ages and from all walks of life. It's no wonder, then, that tea production is a huge industry, with tea being grown in countries all around the globe. But how exactly is tea produced? Let's take a look.

The process of tea production is called tea gardening, tea farming or in the case of large commercial plantations, tea estate management.


Tea cultivation generally falls into two categories: plantation-based and small holder farming.

Plantation-based production dominates the market for black teas, oolong teas, and some green teas. Smallholder farms provide the leaf for most white teas and many green teas. In 2015, plantation-based production accounted for approximately 90 percent of global tea production.


The first step in tea production is plucking, which refers to the picking of the tea leaves. This is typically done by hand and requires a significant amount of labour. In some cases, mechanised plucking machines are used.The people who harvest the tea leaves are called tea pickers or tea pluckers.


After the leaves are plucked, they are withered to reduce their moisture content. This can be done by air drying or by using special dehydrating tunnels equipped with fans and temperature controls.


The next step is rolling, during which the leaves are rolled or twisted to break down the cell walls and release the enzymes that will contribute to flavour. This step also begins the oxidation process, which turns the leaves from green to black.


After rolling, the leaves are placed on racks to oxidise in a controlled environment. The level of oxidation determines the type of tea that is produced: black, oolong, green, etc.


Finally, the leaves are dried to stop the oxidation process and to prevent mould growth. This can be done using hot air, sun drying, or a dehydrator.


The tea leaves are then sorted and graded according to size, shape, and quality. The leaves are then ready to be packaged and sold.


How many leaves are plucked per day?

A typical tea picker can pluck around 20-30 kilograms (44-66 pounds) of tea leaves per day.


Where is tea grown?

Tea is grown in many countries around the world, including China, India, Sri Lanka, Kenya, and Japan. In 2015, China was the leading producer of tea, followed by India, Kenya and Sri Lanka.


Can tea be grown anywhere?

Tea can be grown in many different places, but the best results will come from locations with a warm climate and plenty of sunshine. Tea plants will also do well in soil that is slightly acidic.


What do you need to grow tea?

To grow tea, you need a sunny location with well-drained soil. Tea plants can be started from seed, but it is more common to propagate them from cuttings. Once the plants are established, they will need to be pruned regularly to encourage new growth. Tea plants can be harvested year-round, but the best time to harvest is in the spring and early summer.


What is the plucking season?

The plucking season generally lasts from late April to early November. But it can vary depending on the region where the tea is grown. For example, The tea plucking season in Sri Lanka is from late February to early May. This is when the Camellia Sinensis plant, which is used to make tea, is in full bloom and the leaves are at their freshest. The best time to pick the leaves is early in the morning before the sun gets too hot.


How long does it take to grow tea?

It takes about 3-4 years for a tea plant to mature enough to produce harvestable leaves. But the plant will continue to produce leaves for many years after that.




Tea production is a complex and intricate process, but it's one that yields delicious results that are enjoyed by people all over the world. Next time you sit down for a cup of tea, take a moment to think about all of the hard work that went into making it just perfect for you. From harvesting the leaves to sorting and packaging them, there's a lot that goes into every cup of tea!



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