`Rajasthan Studies Viability of Olive Leaf Tea - Olive Oil Times

Rajasthan Studies Viability of Olive Leaf Tea

May. 7, 2015
Isabel Putinja

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The gov­ern­ment of the Indian state of Rajasthan is explor­ing the pos­si­bil­ity of pro­duc­ing tea with the leaves of the olive tree. Clinical tests are being con­ducted on sam­ples of olive leaves to test the qual­ity of such a tea and its poten­tial to be mar­keted as a brew rich in anti-oxi­dants.

Rajasthan began an ambi­tious project to cul­ti­vate olives in 2007 with the tech­ni­cal assis­tance pro­vided by Israeli experts.

Olive cul­ti­va­tion was pro­moted in this desert state in north-west India because it required less water than other crops and pro­duces a high-value prod­uct. Today there are eleven state-owned farms in seven dis­tricts of the state. One of the farms in Lunkaransar in the Bikaner dis­trict is reported to have pro­duced 8,000 liters of oil.

If ini­tial tests sup­port the via­bil­ity of pro­duc­ing olive leaf tea, the Rajasthan gov­ern­ment has fur­ther plans to set up an olive tea man­u­fac­tur­ing plant. Olive tea has great health ben­e­fits and is con­sid­ered three per­cent more ben­e­fi­cial than nor­mal green tea. We have sent olive leaves to some fac­to­ries for exper­i­ments. They (the fac­to­ries) have pre­pared some tea sam­ples already. Now fur­ther tests are on to assess their health ben­e­fits,” Prabhu Lal Saini, Rajasthan’s agri­cul­ture min­is­ter told the Hindustan Times news­pa­per.

The Rajasthan gov­ern­ment may be on to some­thing. Olive leaf tea is already a pop­u­lar drink in some coun­tries of Europe, Japan, Korea and the USA where it is con­sumed for its health ben­e­fits. Selling olive leaves to tea pro­duc­ers is another way for grow­ers to increase earn­ings.

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