Every one of you is certainly familiar with loose leaf or Orthodox tea and CTC tea. Both of these are variants of Indian tea but they are named differently because of their difference in production style. There are also some other differences between these two blends. Let us find out what are they…

Differentiating CTC and Orthodox Blends

  1. Knowing the Two Varieties of Teas

Orthodox and CTC are two varieties of Assam black tea. As you can understand from the name, Orthodox teas are produced in a traditional method and so, they are named so. On the other hand, CTC blends are produced in an advanced process – Crush, Tear, Curl. The blend so obtained from CTC process comes as granular particles.

  1. Intention of Production

Why are these two varieties of Assam teas produced? Well, orthodox blends are produced for preserving singular virtues of Assam tea and CTC blends are produced so that tea fanatics get a quality beverage but at a much faster rate. Assam tea has high demand in Indian market and the second variant can meet this increasing demand quite easily.

  1. Production Methods

Orthodox blends are harvested using traditional methods and so, their production takes a lot of time and requires immense manpower. Since these are whole leaf teas, they are processed using hands. Orthodox teas are produced using the following processes –

  • Withering
  • Rolling withered leaves to get chemicals
  • Oxidizing for obtaining reddish brown color leaves  
  • Firing to get the ultimate Orthodox tea

CTC blends are produced in an advanced method and hence, take less time. It is, in fact, a faster method of tea production that provides consistent quality blends. In CTC production, leaves are passed through cylindrical rollers having serrated blades. These blends crush, tear and curl the tea leaves as the name CTC suggests.  

  1. Flavor Profile

Orthodox blends offer an authentic flavor of black tea. They have a delicate flavor that is truly different. This blend obtains a brisk and bright liquor having multilayered flavor profile. On the contrary, CTC blends offer a generic flavor and obtain strong dark color liquor. CTC brew has astringency in its taste and tastes best with milk.  

  • Price Tags

Orthodox teas are highly priced since they offer authentic flavor. Another reason for their high price is they have high demand in the market but less production. CTC blends are reasonably priced and they are available all round the year. So, these are the major differences between CTC and whole leaf blends.