Workers unload bags of rice on January 19, 2011 at the Port of Abidjan where 80% of Ivory Coast's exports transit. EU-registered ships have been barred from dealing with Ivory Coast's main cocoa ports in line with sanctions over the nation's controversial November presidential poll. The European Union last weekend slapped sanctions on outcast incumbent leader Laurent Gbagbo and 84 of his associates, as well as 11 economic entities in the world's top cocoa producer. AFP PHOTO/ ISSOUF SANOGO (Photo credit should read ISSOUF SANOGO/AFP/Getty Images)

Burundian Second Vice-President Joseph Butore Monday launched the east African country’s first-ever green tea production at a tea factory in the Cibitoke province, northwestern Burundi.

The launch at Buhoro tea factory coincided with the launch of the third edition of the week dedicated to tea in Burundi.

“This is the first time that Burundi will produce green tea. We will be able to produce green tea for export and consumers of green tea at the local level will have better health,” said Butore.

According to him, tea is very important in Burundi as it is the second cash crop bringing foreign currencies to the east African nation after coffee.

The tea sector generates a lot of employment, said Butore, adding that over 60,000 households in Burundi live on tea farming and production whereas the Burundi Tea Company alone hired 1,000 fulltime employees, with over 4,000 part-time employees.

Butore said the Burundian government through the agriculture ministry committed to boost the tea flavor and production by rehabilitating tea plantations.

He added that the government has also committed to produce both the black and green tea varieties in order to diversify products for export.

Burundi has five tea factories located in five different provinces, according to Burundi Tea Company. Enditem

Source: Xinhua/NewsGhana.com.gh

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