160 million Americans drink tea daily. That’s a large number of tea-drinkers. According to statistics, tea is the second most-consumed beverage after water. According to the Tea Association of the USA, the annual sales of tea from stores across the nation have risen well above $2.2 billion. Why are more people drinking tea these days? There is supporting data from medical research to show that there are many health benefits of drinking tea.
The origin of tea is the leaves of Camellia Sinensis, an evergreen tree with an average height of 16m. White tea, green tea, oolong, pu-erh tea, and black tea are all obtained from this plant, although they are processed using different means to get to varying levels of oxidation. Green tea is made from steaming and drying the leaves of Camellia Sinensis. White tea is made from withering, rolling, fermenting, and lastly drying the leaves. It is harvested when the buds are still covered with white hair (before they get ripened), hence the name. Black tea is made by rolling up the leaves 90-120 minutes before they dry so that they can undergo oxidation. Oolong tea has a shorter fermentation period than black tea.
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