Manufacturing Darjeeling tea is a delicate affair because in every step professionals have to take care to restore the authentic flavor and taste of this blend. Do you know that for preserving the tantalizing aroma of Darjeeling, it is manufactured with the help of orthodox industrial technique? We all know that for Darjeeling blends, quality is the prime focus.

A Quick Glimpse of the Processing of Darjeeling Tea


Folks pluck tea leaves with great care so that they are not wasted. Plucked leaves collected in bamboo baskets are weighed after reaching the factory. Then they undergo the real processing method of Orthodox Production.


This is actually the first stage of Darjeeling tea processing. In this process, the harvested teas are uniformly spread on a withering trough. In processing Darjeeling blends, almost 65% moisture gets removed from the leaves in withering by blowing cold and hot air for almost 14 to 16 hours. The leaves become limp.


Now the withered leaves are placed in rollers. These rollers are of varied sizes. Leaves are rolled under pressure and they get twisted, cells are ruptured and natural juices are released. That is why, the color of the tea leaves change to brown coppery from green.


Rolled tea leaves are now placed on fermentation racks made of aluminum, cement or tiles. Fermentation room generally is cold and fermentation is done at a low temperature. How long the fermentation will go on depends on several factors like –

  • Kind of tea leaves
  • Temperature
  • Degree of withering
  • Fermentation capability of the teas
  • Availability of the vital component, oxygen

Maintain the correct fermentation period is very important because a little delay can affect the flavor of Darjeeling blends.


Fermented tea leaves are then put on the dryer consisting of perforated moving trays. For proper drying, certain things are thoroughly regulated like –

  • Thickness of spread leaves
  • Trays’ speed
  • Volume of the air blown

The entire process can take around 20 to 30 minutes.


This is the final stage in the processing of Darjeeling tea leaves. Teas are sorted by using mechanically oscillating sieves. The decreasing size of the sieve helps to separate the bigger leaves from the smaller and finer ones. Hence, you get different varieties of Darjeeling blends.

It is this manufacturing process that determines what kinds of blends are produced.