A history of Sri Lankan tea
As well as its scenic landscape, beaches and fascinating history Sri Lanka is renowned for its tea. Although it’s a relatively small island, Sri Lanka is one of the biggest growers and exporters of tea in the world. In places as far afield as the Middle East, Russia and the UK, Sri Lankan tea has been enjoyed for over a century.
The island’s relationship with tea dates back to when it was part of the British Empire and known as Ceylon. Its location in the Indian Ocean was extremely important strategically for trading interests in India and the Far East. As such, it was seen as vital that the island had a strong military presence and infrastructure. This was expensive to maintain though, so in the 1820s ways to make the island financially self-sufficient were discussed.