The tea industry in Sri Lanka is an important source of income for the country. Among other tea producing countries in the world, Sri Lanka holds the fourth largest tea producer in the world. Sri Lanka tea is also exported to several other countries and the country is one of the leading tea exporters in the world. About 1 million people are directly or indirectly employed in the tea sector of Sri Lanka.
In Sri Lanka, the British brought a tea plant from China in 1824. Later tea plants were also brought from Calcutta and Assam. A Plantersí Association and Ceylon Chamber of Commerce were soon formed. In 1867, James Taylor introduced tea industry in Sri Lanka. The tea plantation estate was set up in Loolecondera in Kandy. Later Taylor also set up a Sri Lanka tea factory in the same area. The low temperate climate around the year, sufficient amount of rainfall and all other favorable factors of growing tea are present in Sri Lanka.
The major areas where tea is grown in Sri Lanka are Nuwara Eliya, Kandy, Haputale, Bandarawela, Badulla, Galle, Mulkirigala, Matara, Kegalle and Ratnapura. Among Sri Lanka tea, Ceylon black tea, Ceylon white tea and Ceylon green tea are very popular.