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What’s In Tea?

Nowadays it often seems as if everything we eat or drink is bad for us in some way. So it comes as a relief to learn that one popular beverage, affordable and loved by billions of people around the world, is entirely beneficial and may, in fact, have preventive and curative health properties when consumed regularly.

The beverage, of course, is tea. Tea, though it has almost no calories, contains a surprising quantity of nutrients and medicinal ingredients. In addition to these nutrients, tea-drinking promotes dental health because of the fluoride it contains.

a fresh cup of ceylon tea
types of tea - camellia sinensis

Ceylon Tea

  • Ceylon teas are divided into high, medium, and low grown categories.
  • Sri Lanka’s finest teas are produced mainly from bushes that grow above 4,000 feet. The bushes grow more slowly in the cooler, mistier climate, and are harder to harvest because of the steep angle of the slopes on which they are planted
  • There are six main tea-producing areas. Galle, to the south of the island; Ratnapura, east of the capital Colombo; Kandy, the low region near the ancient royal capital; Nuwara Eliya, the highest altitude; Dimbula, west of the central mountains; and Uva, located east of Dimbula.
  • The teas produced in each region have their own individual characteristics of flavour, aroma, and colour.
  • Tea is processed from the tender shoots of the plant Camellia sinensis, typically the first two leaves of the tea plant.
  • Herbal teas are usually made from plants other than tea and will have different tastes and other health benefits


There are very important rules to observe in regard to the storage of tea.

  • Always store tea in a clean, dry airtight container free of foreign odorous.
  • Remember to use a dry spoon, always, and to close the container tightly after use to retain aroma and flavour.
  • Do not store tea along with other pungent grocery items such as oils, soaps, dried fish and spices.
  • Always take out the small quantity of balance tea in a container before replenishing stocks.
  • Place this small quantity on top of the fresh stock so it will be used up first. Otherwise, the remaining tea at the bottom will become stale and flat and could affect fresh stocks introduced.
heladiv storage container


Did you know that as many as 375 to 425 cups of tea could be prepared from a kilogram of tea?

an overflowing tea cup
brewing times for different tea types

Tea Brewing

A good cup of tea and the pleasure you derive from it depends entirely on the method of brewing.

  • Use freshly drawn water which should be brought to boil as much as possible.
  • DO NOT USE previously boiled water that has been continuously boiled.
  • Rinse the teapot first with hot water to help retain the heat of boiling water used for brewing.
  • Bring the teapot to the kettle as soon as the water commences boiling vigorously. Hold the spout of the kettle close to the mouth of the pot to minimize loss of heat.
  • Allow the tea to infuse for 4 to 5 minutes. Strain the tea out into cups thereafter. Use a “Tea cosy” to keep the pot warm should there be a delay in serving.


Always use refined sugar as raw sugar gives a distinctly different flavor to the tea.


Fresh cow’s milk for a good cup of tea. Besides it is easily stored under refrigeration in any quantity.

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