The Tea Board of India launched the “Plant Protection Code” (PPC) to bring in a regime of sustainable crop protection practices across Indian tea plantations.
Features of the code:
The code is a best practice guide to tea production and its objective is to minimise pesticide use and ensure the sustainability of tea production while continuing to improve the quality of tea for consumers.
The PPC is a comprehensive document, which lays down the manner in which chemicals are going to be used safely, in tea cultivation.
The aim is to achieve sustainability through Good Agricultural Practices, including integrated pest management by gradually reducing dependence on chemicals. In March, the Tea Board had issued a directive in this respect exercising its powers under the Tea Marketing (Control) Order, 2003.
The code has been developed by a technical panel consisting of members from the Indian tea industry; tea research institute of UPASI Tea Resea-rch Foundation, the Tea Research Association, international certification bodies and the trustea advisory committee.
Tea Board is of the view that effective adoption of the PPC will enable the industry to safeguard plantation environment, ensure welfare of workers and small farmers and (bring) long-term security of supply.”
The Tea Board of India has decided to defer full implementation of the plant protection code (PPC) which was to be effective from September 1. It has now been deferred till January 2015.
Consumers were increasingly demanding sustainably-produced high quality products with reduced environmental impact, he said, adding that given that objective and to sustain the increasing appetite for Indian tea among consumers, the need for adopting correct plant protection practices had become urgent. While striving towards minimalistic chemical use in the growing process, PPC complements existing regulations, like the Food Safety and Standards Act of 2006 and the list of products permitted for use in the tea sector.