Himachal tea firm gets ISO certification

April 19th, 2011 - 2:48 pm ICT by IANS  

Shimla, April 19 (IANS) Himachal Pradesh’s Dharamsala Tea Company has become the first tea firm in the state to get an ISO (International Organisation for Standardisation) certification, the company said Tuesday.

The ISO 9001:2008 certification would facilitate easy marketing of tea in foreign shores, Devinder Pathania, general manager of the Dharamsala Tea Company, told IANS.

The company, set up by the British near here and now owned by an Indian, has an annual production of 100,000 kg of tea and is now eyeing exports to Japan, Russia, Germany and Britain.

Tea cultivation was introduced in the Himachal’s Kangra valley in the mid-19th century. Camellia tea, planted by the British in 1849, grew very popular. A few years later, tea from Kangra won a gold medal at an exhibition in London in 1886 for its flavour and quality.

However, a major earthquake that hit the area in 1905 destroyed a large number of tea gardens and tea factories.

Currently, a total of 1,000 hectares are under tea cultivation in the state that produces 850,000 kg of tea per year. The government plans to increase production to 2.5 million kg in the next few years.

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