Situated at the southern tip of the Western Ghats, just 40 miles from the cape of the peninsular, is the Singampatti Group of Estates of BBTCL. The estates nestle in the midst of a lush green rainforest, which stands untouched and pristine and is completely isolated. No other human habitation or industry exists in the area for miles around. The elevation of the three estates in the group range from 2,300 to 4,200 feet above sea level. The lowest is named Manjolai, which translates to 'mango grove.' The next estate is 10 kilometers away and 1,500 feet higher and is called Manimuttar (river of pearls) after the river that flows through it. The third, close to Manimuttar, is Oothu, which means 'spring of water'. Our Oothu Estate is ISO 9002:2000 Certified. The three between them cover 804 hectares of tea.
In 1988, when the idea of organic tea arose, it was natural to think of Singampatti. The isolation from external contamination was a contributing consideration, and the environment was the clinching factor.
From Tea to Organic Tea
Botanically Tea plants are the species of Camellia Sinensis or Thea Sinensis and organic tea is not a different plant but the cultivation process and natural treatment brings about considerable difference. Organic tea cultures totally discard the flow of agrochemicals in the food chain.
Organic tea came into being by the philosophical views of Rudolf Steiner and later Lady Eve Balfour, who in 1930s founded the Soil Association and encouraged the culture of organic and beverages in developing countries. Furthering this initiation we started organic tea cultures.
Organic cultivation is not just manpower intensive, but also taxing on the fertility front, where soil fertility has to be maintained without the use of chemicals. We therefore made enriching composite on site, which when combined with oil seed cake acts as a benign fertilizer, improving soil condition and conservation. Vermiculture, natures own way of soil enrichment was used extensively.
Complete Organic Cultivation
Organic tea at Oothu is grown with absolutely no chemical input or artificial fertilizers. Nutrition is provided by the use of vermiculture and large scale application of compost and oil cakes. All pest and disease control is carried out by purely natural methods of cultivation. Today, Oothu Tea Estate produces 1million kgs of organic tea annually.
Tea appreciated the world over
In 1992, we built a factory dedicated to the manufacture of organic tea at Oothu and today, both black and green tea are produced here. This production is carefully inspected and certified by The Institut Für Marktökologie, Switzerland, that is accredited to EEC and associate members of the International Federation of Organic Agriculture Movements (IFOAM). The certification conforms to EEC regulations for production of organic
Organic tea offers all the benefits of conventional tea and above and over that some of its benefits are amplified because of its cultivation procedure. It also nulls the bad effects of agrochemicals found in conventional tea. It is pure, rich, strong, dark and has a refreshing aroma. The benefits of Organic Tea are:
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