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Cameroon Tea Estate: Closer To ISO Certification

The widely consumed tea with a yearly production of 4,500 tons crosses the borders through big tea m

Products of Cameroon Tea Estates are among the most cherished in and out of the country. The company, which specialises in the production and com- mercialisation of black tea, produces many grades of tea. Though processed as one it is only after sorting that the different grades are labelled according to the particle sizes. Its products including the BM (broken mixed) which is coarse is packaged in sacs of 40 and 20 kg and in sachets of 25, 50 and 100 grams, PF (Pekoe Fan- nings) blended with Pokoe Dust and packaged in 2g tea bags and stimulates saliva at first sight due to its great aroma, is a veritable stimulus to the brain. It relieves fatigue. Though the training manager of the CTE, Robert M. Achiri, disclosed they are yet to ex- port part of the 4,500 tons yearly production since the company is in the process to obtain an ISO certification, the tea is highly demanded in Nigeria, and countries in Europe and America. The three tea plantations that make up the company are Ndu Tea in the North West Region, which is the largest (1568 hec- tares) and produces 1,600 tons, Tole Tea Plantation in the South West Region spread over 454 hectares and produces 1,500 tons and the Djuttisa Tea Plantation in the West Region, occupying a surface area of 446 hectares and produces 1,400 tons per year. All three plantations have factories where the tea is pro- cessed, packaged, stored and distributed thereafter. Though CTE does not export, the tea howe- ver is consumed across the bor- ders. But who takes the tea to other countries? 80 per cent of the 4,500 tons yearly production is pur- chased by big tea merchants based in Garoua, Kousse- ri and Maroua who take the tea across the borders to Chad, Niger, South Libya and Sudan where mostly consumed by Arab population. The rest 20 per cent of CTE products is bought in big metropolis including Bafous- sam, Bamenda, Douala, Limbe and Yaounde. While the Grand North; Adamawa, Far North and North prefers Loose tea in 40 and 20 kg bags (Thé en vrac), the Grand South, that is the Centre, East, Littoral, North West, South, South West and West regions go in for the Blue and Red Label packets of 25, 50 and 100 grams. The tea is also taken out of the country by tourists, visi- tors and Cameroonians living abroad. When these group of people visit the country, they often buy made-in-Cameroon tea in smaller quantity for fa- mily consumption. The widely consumed beverage does not only occupy a frontline position during most conferences, fo- rums and important meetings, but also catch the attention of visitors and authorities during trade fares.

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