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21 May 2020 06:32

International Tea Day

MANY Brits love a cup of tea - but will be surprised to know there is a day of celebration the brew across the globe. But how did the day come about? And what's the best way to make a cup of tea? Here's all you need to know... 3 National Tea Day lets brew-lovers celebrate their favourite drink Credit: Getty Images When is International Tea Day 2020?

For Brits, there are two days of celebration for tea. The National Tea Day is on April 21 every year, but just a month later, they celebrate International Tea Day - this year taking place on Thursday, May 21. International Tea Day has been celebrated in popular tea-growing countries like India and Sri Lanka since 2005, but was only adopted by the United Nations in December 2019. That has moved the date from its normal December celebration to May 21. With so many variants and cultures drinking tea, it is hard to pinpoint an exact date as to when the beverage was invented.

It is believed to have originated during the Yunnan region during the Shang dynasty (1,600 BC-1,046 BC) as a medicinal drink. An early record of tea drinking is noted in the third century AD before spreading across the globe. It become a popular beverage in the 17th century in Britain, who went onto introduce its production in India to challenge the Chinese monopoly. Which tea is best for health? Chamomile and Green teas are tied for first place when it comes to health. Both are considered the healthiest tea options however they serve different purposes. Chamomile tea cuts blood-sugar levels, and the chemicals in the tea block activity of an enzyme associated with the development of diabetic eye and nerve damage. Green tea is said to extract lost body fat and reduces cholesterol, while working efficiently to raise our metabolism. 3 National Tea Day takes place every year and was founded by brew enthusiasts Credit: Alamy How can you make the perfect cup of tea? Everyone has a personal preference when it comes to making the perfect cuppa, but this is a good place to start: Draw a kettle using freshly drawn cold water which enhances the brightness in the cup Be careful to not over boil the water (note: black tea brews best at boiling point) Pop a tea bag or tea leaves in your mug and pour the hot water on top (if using tea leaves add two grams of tea leaves for 100ml of water in a strainer or infuser) Stir briefly and then leave the bag in the mug Allow the teabag to brew for two and a half to three minutes to make sure the flavour fully develops (for black tea allow five minutes) Gently squeeze the bag once against the edge of the mug and then remove (if using tea leaves remove the strainer) Enjoy with milk, sugar, lemon or served black depending on your preference 3 Allow the teabag to brew for two and a half to three minutes to make sure the flavour fully develops Credit: Getty Images PLANE TOUGH Mum-of-22 Sue Radford gutted after failing to get Australian holiday refund WHISK TAKER Woman transforms her bland kitchen into a bright and modern space for just £90 RUFF DEAL Neighbour demands mum only lets kid out for 15mins a day as he upsets the dogs SEX & THE SETTEE Ultimate lockdown sex survey reveals 59% of you have done it in the lounge MYSTIC MEG May 21: Use this special day well as the moon doubles your love and luck chances not cool Sleeping with a fan on is actually really bad for your health Does the milk go in first or second in a cup of tea? They said on their website: "Historically, the 'milk in first' rule was to protect the fine bone china it was served in - it's a very individual thing." The Sri Lanka Tea Board is celebrating the International Tea Day which falls today. SLTB said various tea producing countries were celebrating a tea day of their own, some classified as Black Tea Day and some categorised as Green Tea Day depending on the importance to each industry. The day was different from country to country. Sri Lanka and India used to celebrate on 10 December. However with the initiative of China who is making huge strides in the World Tea Industry, United Nations General Assembly declared 21 May as the International Tea Day. The Food and Agricultural Organisation Inter Governmental Group (FAO/IGG) supported this new idea of China to consolidate the date. The year 2020 is going to be the first occasion to celebrate the International Tea Day. Due to the coronavirus pandemic attacking the entire world, the event will not consist of outside celebrations or even indoor programs due to the necessity for social distancing and staying safely indoors as much as possible. Thus, it goes without saying that all commemorations needs to be through social and digital media, creating a token ceremonial platform in the tea producing and tea consuming countries the world over. The reason for celebrating the International Tea Day and creating a popular platform is multi-fold as explained below: 1. The revenue generation from tea industry in most of the producer nations is significant and rather prominent 2. Due to its labour intensive nature, a large working population is directly dependent on the tea industry of many countries. 3. Even the affiliated supporting industries such as banking, shipping, printing, packaging, courier service, insurance etc. relies heavily on the tea industry of many manufacturing nations 4. In large tea producing and exporting countries, the success and failure of the industry has a major bearing on the ruling Government and could even change an election decision In view of the foregoing, it is inevitable that a tribute has to be paid to a country's tea industry which is a vital sector for the progress of its economy. The involved people need to be recognised. The supply chain players in the value addition cycle from the farmers to pluckers and right up to the brand marketeer given due cognition. So, this is a fascinating story where all the stakeholders in the tea industry could bravely "walk the talk". In such a background, the Sri Lanka tea industry wishes to recognise few vital characters and crucial segmentation to pay tribute for the invaluable service and enormous sacrifices made to raise the popularity and perceived quality parameters to stardom: The sweat of the toiling workers is the green gold which ultimately serves the connoisseur to his or her satisfaction The tea stains on the fingers of the pluckers tell an unknown story which is unlimited in value A great story on uplifting women's empowerment from birth to death Reliability, consistency and sustainability is the forte of the Sri Lanka Tea Industry now boasting of a 153-year heritage. These unique pillars have been the backbone of the island nation's economy for many years The Sri Lanka tea fraternity salutes the brave and courageous workforce in the tea industry who are continuing to produce the golden brew to the satisfaction of tea connoisseurs globally despite the COVID-19 pandemic lockdown by retaining the required social distancing, sanitation precautions and protection through the wearing of face masks and sometimes, hand gloves.