Lack of conservation area for rare tea plant

Published On: January 22, 2020 09:14 AM NPT By: Bhim Chapagain

ILAM, Jan 22: Ilam is famous for its tea gardens but the government's apathy towards conservation and promotion of Nepali tea is a serious concern for tea entrepreneurs. According to tea experts, tea gardens which have been privatized contain precious tea plants but it lacks conservation and expansion. Government should designate conservation area and expand the precious plant but at present it is produced as normal tea, and sold for nominal prices.

According to the experts, the original 'Camellia Sinensis' is only present in tea gardens of Ilam. According to Sonam Lama, a tea expert, the original 'Camellia Sinensis' is only found in three and four sections of tea gardens. “There are various tea gardens in Nepal, but the original Camellia Sinensis bought from Fujian of China is limited within the tea gardens of Ilam,” said Lama, “No one has paid attention to conserve this endangered species of the world. The other reason is that most people don't have the knowledge about its importance.”

According to experts, buds of other tea plants are green but buds of 3(A) and 4(A) section are red. Comparing with other tea plants, it has a different type of structure. This type of species of tea plants are not allowed to be sold in other countries. Except Fujian, this type of plant cannot be taken to other provinces of China. “Various laboratories in the world have proved it as high quality tea,” said Lama, 

According to Udaya Chapagain, a tea expert and entrepreneur, the smell of this tea is different and attractive. “Even Darjeeling, famous for its tea does not have this kind of tea,” said Chapagain, “For real tea lovers, this tea is no less than the value attached to pearl and diamond.”

According to Lama, the government should work with tea entrepreneurs to conserve and expand the production of this precious tea. Tea entrepreneurs will more likely earn higher revenue from such high quality tea rather than only selling it as a normal tea at market prices.

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