There is no decrease in the production of Darjeeling tea, but its buyers and valuers have decreased. The main reason for this is recession. The largest export of Darjeeling tea is to Europe. But the situation is going bad there.
The story of Darjeeling tea is unique. You can’t get its taste anywhere else. this is the reason Darjeeling tea It is also called ‘Champagne of Tea’. But the condition of this tea is still bad. Darjeeling tea is fighting for its existence in the world markets. A report in ‘Economic Times’ says that half of Darjeeling’s tea estates or tea estates are on the verge of being sold. These tea gardens are now looking for customers. The rising wages of laborers, falling demand for tea and prices have put Darjeeling tea in trouble. Let us know why such a crisis has arisen in front of Darjeeling tea.
1- There is tea, but there is no buyer
Yes, there is no decrease in the production of Darjeeling tea, but its buyers and valuers have reduced. The main reason for this is recession. The largest export of Darjeeling tea is to Europe. But the situation is going bad there. The Russia-Ukraine war has left European countries in a state of disrepair. Due to this the demand for Darjeeling is decreasing due to which tea growers are facing huge problems.
2-Protest spoiled work
Protests by workers and unions are common in tea gardens. This affects production as well as exports. Due to the protests, the image of Darjeeling tea and tea gardens has been tarnished in the world. Some countries have reduced the demand for Darjeeling tea due to this. The most prominent name in this is Japan. Japan is also a prominent name in the world of Darjeeling tea. But Japan has reduced demand. The reason for this is the 2017 Gorkhaland protests, which halted tea work for almost 100 days. In these difficult days, Japan shifted the focus from Darjeeling tea to Nepal.
3-The rise of Nepal in the tea business
Nepal has emerged as a big market for tea for many countries. Nepal’s tea has already become famous both in import and export. Due to this, both the production and sale of Darjeeling tea have been affected in a big way. The demand for Darjeeling tea from Europe and Japan has decreased, due to which the tea gardens here are continuously running in losses. There are reports that substandard tea from Nepal is being sold and premium tea from Darjeeling is being re-exported from there.
According to one figure, the production of Darjeeling tea has been a record reaching 110 lakh kg in a year. But gradually it has seen a decrease. In the year 2021-22, the production of Darjeeling tea was just over 71 lakh kg. On the other hand, about 45 lakh kg of tea was imported from Nepal in January to May 2022, while in the same period in 2021 this quantity was 19 lakh kg. That is, in a year, more than double the tea was imported from Nepal to India. Due to this the demand for Darjeeling tea decreased.
5-Change in government rules
The effect of changes in government rules has also been seen. In 2003, the government refused to give GI tag to any imported tea. In November 2021, the Tea Board issued a notification banning the distribution of second-grade imported tea in the domestic market. With this, the Bengal government allowed tea tourism on 15 percent of the tea gardens. Because of this, the local tea vendors are preparing to set up a resort on the tea garden land. For this, tea garden land is being developed according to tea tourism.