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The British brought the first tea shrub to Sri Lanka in 1824, planting it at the Peradeniya Royal Botanical Gardens but it was not until 1867 that tea was planted for commercial purposes.
Sri Lankan tea is categorised as low, medium or high grown variety depending on the altitude at which it is grown. The rolling hills of Nuwera Eliya, with an altitude of 1,890 metres (6,200 ft) produces the world’s best tea – called the “Champagne of Teas” – celebrated for lots fine flavour and lingering freshness.
Today, Sri Lanka produces more than 300,000 metric tons of tea. It is the world’s largest producer of black tea with Colombo being the world’s largest tea auction centre.
Sri Lankan’s are passionate consumers of the “cuppa”, and often find any reason to enjoy a piping hot cup of ginger or milk tea.