Tea cultivation in the North Bengal started about 150 years ago during the British era. First planted in Darjeeling in 1856 and today, the tea cultivation has spread from Darjeeling to Koch Behar, Jalpaiguri and North Dinajpur.
The drive to the tea gardens itself is very alluring from the station. One moment sitting in a car, you will be making way through the traffic towns of Jalpaiguri and Siliguri and the next moment, with just one turn of the road, you’ll be driving on a road concealed with enormous, superabundant trees on both sides. Your mobile signal will die off, the noise and pollution will slowly begin to diminish & silence starts spooking you.
Glancing through the windows, a fresh breeze with the pleasant scent of tea leaves hits you. Birds tweeting, merrily evokes your senses . The tea gardens come abruptly with such a difference that it’s hard to imagine that they actually exist within a few meters of the nearest town.
Constant rainfall in North Bengal since the beginning of July hampers the production of tea.
The Secretary General, Tea Association of India, PK Bhattacharjee states that production in the month of July is likely to be lower by around 20-25 per cent.
North Bengal includes the tea gardens in Dooars, Terai and Darjeeling. The tea gardens of this region received more than 50 per cent of its total rainfall in the month of July.
It is also very important to understand that the tea growing regions of North Bengal normally receive 80-90 inches of rainfall annually but the region recently in just a week’s time received around 30 inches of rainfall. This created huge portion of garden land getting submerged therefore disrupting the maintenance of the gardens during the utmost second flush period.
The fall in production in North Bengal would help in balancing the demand-supply situation.
Tea production in North India, which gardens of Assam and West Bengal, is increased by nearly 15 per cent at around 247.3 million kg during January-May 2019, when compared with a production of around 215.7 last year. This leads to CTC prices on a downward trend.
This year CTC prices are reduced by around Rs.10-15 per kg when compared to the same period last year. The drop in production of North Bengal tea will create a balance the demand-supply situation and improve CTC prices, reports stated.