KOLKATA: Keeping in view the needs of research support and continuous innovations to bring about transformational change in the Indian tea industry, the Tocklai tea research association (TRA), on Wednesday, launched the TRA-TOCKLAI GAP-GMP Standard.

The TRA-TOCKLAI GAP-GMP Standard is aligned with the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals (UNSDG).

The Standard supports strategies which will contribute in improving overall farm practices, management systems and sustainability performance.

The idea of having a home-grown sustainability certification was mooted by Joydeep Phukan, secretary TRA to the council of management of TRA on June 29, 2022 which was unanimously accepted. 

TRA-TOCKLAI GAP-GMP Standard is being supported by Tea Board of India unlike other standards.

It was launched at the 58th Annual General Meeting of Tea Research Association on September 28 at Kolkata by Saurav Pahari, chairman of Tea Board of India.

Former union minister and president of ACMS – Paban Singh Ghatowar was also present in the launch function.

TRA-TOCKLAI GAP-GMP Standard, which will start from January 1, 2023 recognizes the challenges faced by the tea industry due to climate change and prescribes climate-resilient practices to adapt and mitigate climate change impacts, improving resilience of the industry.

The recommended practices on maintaining healthy soils, conserving water and energy resources, avoiding deforestation, encouraging afforestation programme, planting climate-smart planting material, protecting natural ecosystems and biodiversity, reducing GHG emissions etc. would significantly contribute towards a climate-resilient tea industry.

TRA chairman Prabhat Bezboruah stated that Tocklai should come out with climate resilient tea clones after it has successfully sequenced the tea genome.

TRA Tocklai believes that adoption of the best practices, indicated in the Standard, would contribute towards a people and planet positive tea industry by 2030 with continuous improvements.

Tocklai Tea Research Institute of Tea Research Association has been the pioneer R&D organization globally in the field of tea research and engineering since 1911.

Through its wide range of R&D activities over 112 years, TRA Tocklai has actually made tea plantations economically viable in North India and have made significant contributions by developing more than 200 tea cultivars, suitable agro-techniques and location specific package of practices for nutrition, crop protection, tea processing, methodology of sustainable tea plantations and production. TRA Tocklai invented the CTC tea and Rotorvane machine which revolutionised tea production and consumption in the world. 

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