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Classification of Tea

Orthodox Teas(Leaf Teas)

These teas are blackish / brownish in appearance and comprise of four main categories:

Whole Leaf

Long and Wiry, Grade name FTGFOP (Fine Tippy Golden Flowery Orange Pekoe) or TGFOP, GFOP, FOP in decreasing order of quality and fineness in leaf appearance.


Meaning what it says i.e., smaller in size, Grade name TGBOP (Tippy Golden Broken Orange Pekoe) or FBOP, BOP in decreasing order of quality.


Still smaller and lighter particles than Brokens, Grade name GOF (Golden Orange Fannings) or FOF, OF, in decreasing order of quality.


The smallest particles-powder. Grade name PD (Pekoe Dust).

In the cup, Orthodox Teas are generally bright and brisk. The whole leaf grades are lighter than the brokens. In fact, the smaller the leaf particle, the more colour and body it infuses.

CTC Teas(Granular)

These teas are blackish / brown and the Crush, Tear and Curl (CTC) process of manufacture makes the teas granular. They comprise of 3 main grades viz. Brokens, Fannings and Dust. CTC brews quickly and makes a full bodied gustier cup than Orthodox Tea with almost double cuppage.

Green Tea(Leaf Teas)

These teas are processed differently (without fermenting) and are greenish in leaf colour, giving a very mild pale yellowish green liquor.

White Tea(Leaf Teas)

These teas are hand processed and semi-fermented. Only the delicate buds (middle leaf) are used.

The principal chemical constituents of Tea are Caffeine, Tannin and Essential Oils. The first gives the stimulation, the second gives the body and strength and the third gives the flavour and aroma.

Different Types of Indian Tea

Darjeeling Tea

Teas grown on the misty heights of the Hill District of Darjeeling, popularly known as the " Champagne of Tea" are famous the world over, for their exquisite aroma and taste. The premium Darjeeling Teas are generally mild in character and have distinctive natural fruity or Muscatel flavours. Undoubtedly - the best teas in the world and the most sought after by connoisseurs. Darjeeling produces the highest quality but the quantity produced is less than 2% of the total tea produced in India . The bulk of the Darjeelings comprise of Orthodox Teas and high quality, unfermented, Green Teas are also manufactured selectively. Some premier Tea Gardens also manufacture the semi-fermented White Teas. For more information, please contact us.

Assam Tea

Tea grown in the plains of North East India along the mighty river Brahmaputra and comprises a major part of the total tea produced in India . Mostly, CTC (Crush-Tear-Curl) Teas are produced here, alongwith a smaller quantity of Orthodox (Leaf Teas) as well. Strong Teas with full body and strength, ideal for Milk Tea. (Chai) or Special Tea (Masala Chai).

Green Tea

India also produces quality Green tea which is known to have several medicinal properties. Green Tea is grown in the plains of Dooars (in North Bengal ) and now some very high quality green teas are made in Darjeeling , world famous for flavoury Black Teas. Green Teas are believed to relieve one from hypertension, and protect one from various cancers.

Nilgiri Tea

Teas grown in the South Central region of India , known as the Nilgiri Hills or Blue Mountains , in the states of Kerala and Tamil Nadu. Both Orthodox as well as CTC Teas are manufactured here and are comparatively lower in quality and cheaper in price to other Indian Teas.


The foothills of Darjeeling are known as Terai and the plains further North East, stretching along the Bhutan border upto the Assam border, are known as Dooars. This area, too, produces mostly CTC Teas and some Orthodox & Green Teas.

Other Tea Growing Areas

In order to boost the production of tea, other areas like Arunachal Pradesh, Meghalaya, Nagaland, Orissa , Sikkim and Uttar Pradesh have or are in the process of raising tea plantations.

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