Interaction with School chairman on ‘ Tea’ for classes 7 and 8

Posted by on Feb 13, 2019 in School News | Comments Off

On Wednesday, 29 January 2019 the students of classes 7 and 8 had an interactive session with our School Chairperson Mr. Goradia on ‘tea’, an aromatic beverage widely consumed around the world and one of India’s prize agricultural products. We were quite excited to learn more about this household drink which is the elixir of life for most Indians.

Mr. Goradia who has spent a considerable part of his life in the tea industry spoke to us about the history, origin and production of tea. A power point presentation on the different aspects of tea was also shared with us. He told us that when the British colonised India, they imported tea. However, it proved to be expensive, so they compelled Indian peasants to grow tea for them and this is how tea production got introduced in India.

Sir shared with us the intriguing story of the origins of tea. The people of Southwest China had been prone to dysentery. To cure themselves they boiled leaves in water and drank this as a medicinal drink. The leaves were added only for taste and one particular leaf was found very tasty. This particular leaf was that of the evergreen tea shrub, Camellia Sinensis.

Soon, the Chinese began consuming the drink as a recreational beverage. Chinese physician Huo Tao wrote in a medical text that this stimulating concoction made one think better! Tea was introduced in Europe by Portuguese merchants and priests in the 16th century. Tea drinking became fashionable among the Britons in the 17th century. Hence, the British started large-scale production and commercialisation of the plant in India to keep their kettles brewing.

Mr. Goradia told us that tea leaves are not sundried, instead, they are dried in the shade. Black tea does not contain more than 3% moisture (in the leaves). We also got to know that although tea gardens are present in both hills and on the plains, the latter are better suited for growing tea. Also, tea is grown in the shade and the closer the bushes are planted, the better is the produce.That way the growth of leaves is prevented. In fact, if left to themselves, tea plants can grow up to 20 feet tall!

In the end, students posed interesting questions like ‘ Is tea better for health or coffee?’, ‘Alcohol can be made from tea, but is tea alcoholic?’ etcetera.

The session was as refreshing and stimulating as a gently brewed cup of tea. We are honoured and privileged to get an opportunity to participate in these meetings with Mr. Goradia, a thinker and a visionary, who constantly endeavours to keep us well-informed and enlightened. Thus, keeping alive the School motto ‘Knowledge is Power’.

Ananya S, VIII E

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