GUWAHATI, Oct 17 - There is good news for the tea industry. Several countries have pledged their full support to the Indian proposal for observing an International Tea Day, which was mooted at the inter-sessional meeting of the two-day Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations (FAO) Intergovernmental Group (FAO IGG) Meeting held at Milan in Italy on October 15 and 16.
The meeting decided to place the proposal before the United Nations at the earliest. According to Joydeep Phukan, coordinator for the FAO IGG for India and Secretary of the Tea Research Association (TRA), Chairman of the Tea Board of India Santosh Kumar Sarangi mooted the proposal to the FAO IGG at the meeting. Sarangi argued that observing an International Tea Day would help generate more interest on different aspects of tea among the youngsters and this would boost tea consumption globally.
This proposal was unanimously supported by countries like Canada, United States, European Union, Sri Lanka, China, Japan, Kenya and Malawi, which attended the inter-sessional meeting. These countries thanked India for the proposal.
It was decided at the meeting that the FAO Secretariat would work with the member countries of the Intergovernmental Group to place the proposal before the United Nations soon. The date for observing the day has not been decided. A decision on the date will be arrived at in consultation with the member countries of the IGG.
The inter-sessional meeting discussed various issues of the global tea industry, ranging from pesticide residue, climate change, sustainability, etc., Phukan said.