Current Status and Future Development of Global Tea Production and Tea Products

AU J.T 05/2009; 12(12):251-264.


Tea is globally one of the most popular and lowest cost beverages, next only to water. Tea is consumed by a wide range of age groups in all levels of society. More than three billion cups of tea are consumed daily worldwide. Tea is considered to be a part of the huge beverage market, not to be seen in isolation just as a 'commodity'. Tea active ingredients are of interest to functional foods markets. Africa, South America, the Near East and especially the Asian region produces a varied range of teas, this, together with a reputation in the international markets for high quality, has resulted in Asia enjoying a share of every importing market in the world. Huge populations in Asia, Middle East, Africa, UK, EU, and countries of the CIS consume tea regularly and throughout the day. The main tea producing countries globally are: in Africa: Burundi, Kenya, Malawi, Rwanda, Tanzania, Uganda, Zimbabwe and others. In South America: Argentina, Brazil and others; In Near East: Iran and Turkey. In Asia: Bangladesh, China, India, Indonesia, Sri Lanka, Viet Nam and others. In addition, the Russian Federation and CIS countries produce quantities of tea. Numerous types of teas are produced in the countries listed above. In China, for example, the country with the largest planting of tea and second in output, green tea is around half of the total export, black tea around one third and other teas one fifth. Depending on the manufacturing technique it may be described as green, black, oolong, white, yellow and even compressed tea. Many other teas and tea products continue to be developed by those active tea producing and consuming countries. The Intergovernmental Group on Tea monitors market conditions and provides an update of potential market prospects for tea over the medium term. The data in this paper is compiled essentially from their published data (FAO 2008) which examines the current situation and medium term prospects for production, consumption and trade of tea, and its impact on the world tea market. In summary, tea is considered as having a share of the global beverage market, a highly competitive field. A wide range of tea products continue to be developed, through product and process development for added-value, as market shares become more sophisticated and competitive. The tea industry must rise to these challenges, facing the future with confidence.

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    • "The utilization of harvesting machinery on the field in contrast to handpicking techniques commonly practices on tea plantations, might present a major risk factor for dehydro PAs contamination as dehydro PAs-producing weeds growing on the same field can be easily co-harvested by modern harvesting machinery. The relatively low dehydro PAs burden of green and black tea as compared to chamomile and peppermint herbal teas, might be due to the fact that teas in general are commonly handpicked in contrast to many herbal teas (Hicks 2009). Furthermore, airborne dehydro PAs-producing weed particles such as pollen can easily contaminate nearby crops and tea plantations and therefore their removal from the teas and herbal tea leaves by various physical means and/or the eradication of dehydro PAs producing weeds in nearby fields needs to be considered. "
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    ABSTRACT: Dehydro pyrrolizidine alkaloids (dehydro PAs) are carcinogenic phytotoxins prevalent in the Borginaceae, Asteracea and Fabacea families. Dehydro PAs enter the food and feed chain by co-harvesting of crops intended for human and animal consumption as well as by carry-over into animal-based products such as milk, eggs and honey. Recently the occurrence of dehydro PAs in teas and herbal teas has gained alarming attention from the EU, due to the high dehydro PAs-levels found in commercially available teas and herbal teas in Germany and Switzerland. Furthermore, several tropane alkaloids (TAs, e.g. scopolamine and hyoscyamine) -intoxications due to consumption of contaminated herbal teas were reported in the literature. The aim of the present study was to determine the dehydro PAs and TAs-levels in 70 pre-packed tea-bags of herbal and non-herbal tea-types sold in supermarkets in Israel. Chamomile, peppermint and rooibos teas contained high dehydro PAs levels in almost all samples analysed. Lower amounts were detected in black and green teas, while no dehydro PAs were found in fennel and melissa herbal teas. Total dehydro PAs concentrations in chamomile, peppermint and rooibos teas ranged from 20 to 1729 μg/kg. Except for black tea containing only mono-ester retrorsine-type dehydro PAs, all other teas and herbal teas showed mixed patterns of dehydro PA ester types indicating a contamination by various weed species during harvesting and/or production. The TA levels per tea bag were below the recommended acute reference dose, however the positive findings of TAs in all peppermint tea samples warrant a more extensive survey. The partially high levels of dehydro PAs found in teas and herbal teas present an urgent warning letter to the regulatory authorities to perform routine quality control analysis and implement maximum residual levels for dehydro PAs.
    Food Additives and Contaminants - Part A Chemistry, Analysis, Control, Exposure and Risk Assessment 09/2015; DOI:10.1080/19440049.2015.1087651 · 1.80 Impact Factor
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    • "Tea is one of the most popular and lowest cost beverages in the world and ranks second to water (Hicks, 2009). It is prepared from the young, tender leaves of a shrub Camellia sinensis (Cabrera et al., 2003). "
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    • "Tea (Camellia sinensis) has a long history of medicinal use in Asian countries, such as China, Japan, India, and Thailand as ancient as 50,000 years ago (Chopade et al., 2008). Tea is the most popular and lowest cost beverages in the 20 world, next only to water (Hicks, 2009). Tea leaves are popularly consumed with unfermented (green tea), semi-fermented (oolong tea), fermented (black tea), Pu'erh tea, and red tea forms (Chen et al., 2009a,b). "
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    ABSTRACT: Abstract Tea (Camellia sinensis) has a long history of medicinal use in the world. The chemical components of tea mainly consist of polyphenols, proteins, polysaccharides, chlorophyll, alkaloids, and so on. Great advances have been made in chemical and bioactive studies of catechins and polyphenols from tea in recent decades. However, the polysaccharides from tea materials have received much less consideration than that of polyphenols. The number of relevant publications on the polysaccharides from tea leaves and flowers has increased rapidly in recent years. This mini-review summarizes the structure-function relationship of polysaccharides from tea leaves and flowers. The application of purified polysaccharides from tea material as functional or nutritional foods was still little. It will help to develop the function foods with tea polysaccharides and better understand the structure-bioactivity relationship of tea polysaccharides.
    Critical Reviews in Food Science and Nutrition 10/2013; 55(7). DOI:10.1080/10408398.2012.678423 · 5.18 Impact Factor
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