Tea industry Current Affairs - 2020

Darjeeling Green Tea & White Tea receive GI Tag

On November 16, 2019, two tea varieties of Darjeeling were registered under “Geographical Indication of Goods (Registration and Protection) Act, 1999”. It includes Green Tea and White Tea of Darjeeling.

Darjeeling Tea

Darjeeling produces 85 lakh kilograms of tea. Of this Green Tea constitutes 10 lakh kilo grams and White Tea constitutes 1 lakh kilo grams.

GI Tag

The Geographical Indication is used on products that correspond to a specific geographical location. Darjeeling Tea was the first product in India to receive GI tag. The tag helps to get an identity in international market. It will also help to boost the production.

The Geographical Indications are defined by the WTO’s TRIPS (Trade Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights) Agreement. India enacted the GI of Goods act, 2009 as a member of WTO and as a signatory of TRIPS agreement.

Green Tea

Green Tea is made from same tea leaves. However, it does not undergo the process of withering and oxidation. Though Green Tea originated in China, it is spread all over Asia.

White Tea

White Tea is known as the most delicate tea varieties. This is because it is minimally processed. The leaves are harvested before the leaves open completely.

FSSAI bans stapler pins in tea bags from January 2018

The Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) has banned the use of stapler pins in tea bags from January 2018. FSSAI ban order issued under Section (15) FSS Act, 2006 has deemed that any loose staple pin consumed inadvertently with tea may cause a serious health hazard.

Key Facts

Currently, tea bags are either stapled or knotted. According to industry estimates, the tea bag segment contributes 3-4% by value of total tea sales but it is one of the fastest growing segments at 50-60% year-on-year.

The FSSAI order directs the concerned food business operators to discontinue the manufacture, storage, distribution, sale and import of stapled tea bags by 1 January 2018. It also directs all food safety commissioners to take action to prevent the use of unsafe packaging materials by companies and take up measures for enforcement of its order.

About FSSAI

FSSAI is a nodal statutory agency responsible for protecting and promoting public health in India through the regulation and supervision of food safety. FSSAI was established under the Food Safety and Standards Act, 2006 and operates under aegis of Union Ministry of Health & Family Welfare.