Bid to promote organic tea

Our correspondent
Itanagar, April 19: In an endeavor to promote organic tea cultivation in the State, the Department of Trade & Commerce has sponsored 20 progressive tea farmers from identified tea growing districts of the State for an exposure tour to Darjeeling, West Bengal and Namchi in Sikkim.
   The objective of the five-day tour, which started from April 5, was to provide exposure to the tea farmers so that they could take up tea cultivation in their respective places in a more feasible way. Its objective was also to prepare the interested tea growers equipped with technical know-how in order to take up tea cultivation in an organic manner.
In Darjeeling, the team, which was led by Deputy Director of Trade & Commerce Toko Togur, was given briefing on tea cultivation by Assistant Director of Tea Board of India Pralad Chettry.  The team along with Development Officer of the Tea Board of India Poorie Sherpa visited Happy Valley Tea Estate, the second oldest organic tea garden of Darjeeling.
The team also visited Temi Tea Garden at Namchi (Sikkim). The tea farmers from the State got first-hand information in the process of tea cultivation at Temi Tea Estate. The tea production in this estate has been switched from the conventional method to ‘organic method’.
The change has involved the use of organic bio-fertilisers such as cattle manure, neem cakes and vermi-compost manure replacing the chemical fertilisers used in the past. It is the only tea garden in Sikkim and considered one of the best in India and in the world. The top quality tea is produced, which is in high-demand in the international market.