Darjeeling Tea Essay

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Tea cultivation in Darjeeling hills was a part of a broader Colonial policy of Commercialization of Agriculture which was one of the essential features of the 19th Century Indian economy. The colonial commercial venture prompted the search for new market which in turn fostered cross border trade. In this context Tibet was envisages as potential market for the Indian Tea. The colonial knowledge about Tibetan fondness for tea date back to the time of Warren Hasting; the accounts of the first English diplomat to Tibet, George Bogle had highlighted about this issue. In this connection author Nagendra Singh was of the opinion that one of the reasons for the plantation of Tea in Bengal and Assam was to export tea to Tibet. The credit for the introduction of tea in Darjeeling goes to the Superintendent of Darjeeling, Dr Archibald Campbell, who conducted a successful experimental growth of tea in Darjeeling in 1841. It was he who first conceptualized the trade of Darjeeling tea with Tibet. In 1856 first commercial Tea Industry was established in Darjeeling and in the subsequent decades tea industries made a steady progress in the hills. Unlike the tea of Assam which had an indigenous variety, the Darjeeling…show more content…
In his report Macaulay calculated the cost of export of Darjeeling tea to Tibet and deduced that the Darjeeling tea could reach Lasha even at a cheaper rate than Brick tea of China even if the Tibetan authorities imposed huge custom taxes equivalent to that levied by China on the Brick tea. At Sighatze and Gyantse, in his calculation, the cost of Darjeeling Tea would have been even less while that of the China tea would have been greater as this place was closer to Darjeeling. Macaulay even recommended for the use of gunny bag for tea package for export to Tibet, instead of the usual expensive wooden box which was used for English

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