We are all familiar with the four basic types of teas – green, white, oolong and black. There are other varieties as well like herbal teas, scented and flavored blends. But, tea production primarily means cultivation and production of the basic types of blends.

Tea is produced from the plant called Camellia Sinensis. Tea leaves of this plant are processed differently to give you blends of specific scent, color and taste. Tea is much like wine in the sense that its quality and flavor depends on the atmospheric condition it is grown. When tea leaves are collected, they are carried to the factory for processing.

Different Techniques Involved in Tea Production


Oxidation is the primary process that creates the difference between each variety of tea. For instance, leaves of black brews are highly oxidized while that of white blends are least oxidized. Role of oxidization is quite significant in catering diverse taste and flavor of any blend. When the leaves are plucked and transported to the factory, they undergo the following processes –

  • Withering

Here the leaves are spread in open air to wither so that they lose some moisture.

  • Rolling

Then the leaves are rolled so that leftover moisture is also released, thereby coating the leaves’ surface with their juices. In orthodox method, after rolling tea leaves generally remain unbroken and whole. But, in CTC tea method, leaves are chopped into small pieces.

  • Oxidization

In oxidation, leaves are spread in damp, cool atmosphere. As oxygen starts reacting with cell tissues, the color of the leaves begin changing from green to copper.

  • Drying

In this, tea leaves are dried with hot air and their color changes to black or brown from copper.

  • Sorting

This is the final process when tea leaves are sorted according to grade and size.

These processes are followed in all varieties of teas with a little difference.

  • Black tea are completely oxidized and hence, they have the full-bodied flavor.
  • White tea, on the contrary, is almost un-oxidized as their leaves are dried at low temperature as compared to other varieties of blends that are pan fried.
  • Green brews again are steamed so that their enzymes are preserved. This variant is clean and has a vegetal taste.
  • Leaves of oolong teas are plucked when they are ripe. They are dried for a short time as compared to black teas.

So, now you can understand how this Indian beverage is produced and how their process creates the difference in their taste and flavor.