The Tea Board of India has issued a circular and asked the tea manufacturers to strictly comply with FSSAI norms and get their products tested for quality at labs accredited by NABL (National Accreditation Board for Testing and Calibration Laboratories). This would be necessary for both domestic as well as export businesses to ensure the quality of brew sold.
As per the senior Tea Board official, an official circular has been issued in this regard, seeking test reports from the manufacturers.
Tea Board officials mentioned that the country’s apex food regulator had issued detailed notifications regarding the contaminants and pesticide residues, adding that food products needed to comply with those.
It was also decided that the manufacturers of tea should, therefore, conduct the testing of their products in order to comply with the food safety norms with respect to pesticides and heavy metals, amongst others.
The official also mentioned that the tea manufacturers reverted on a positive note, stating that the producers/manufacturers were already complying with the norms prescribed by FSSAI, and the latest move by the Tea Board would be a confidence-booster for the industry. India is the second largest producer of tea in the world. However, a study conducted by the Tea Board stated that about 80 percent of the total tea produced in India was consumed by the domestic population.
In January and February 2019, 41 million kg of tea worth Rs 934.08 crore were exported. Iran and Russia were the top importers, with their imports amounting to about around 11.37 and 7.59 million kg of tea, respectively.