PMD Tea Managing Director Dananjaya Silva
The month of June this year marks the joyous platinum jubilee celebrations of the Queen of England’s 70-year reign. As a Commonwealth country, Sri Lanka has close ties with Britain. PMD Tea is an enterprise that has close ties to the royal household. The Royal Farms (Windsor Farm Shop) Platinum Jubilee tea will be harvested from the very tea bushes that The Duke of Edinburgh planted back in 1954 when he, along with the Queen, visited the Pedro Estate in Nuwara Eliya. The estate, which is managed by Kelani Valley Plantions PLC, is known by tea connoisseurs for making some of the world’s most sought-after seasonal teas.
Today, PMD Tea is the exclusive supplier to the Royal Farms Windsor Farm shop and is participating in the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee with great enthusiasm. The one-off harvest will be limited for 300 tea caddies and will be on sale at the Windsor Farm Shop. The very tea bushes that Duke of Edinburgh planted is where Royal Farms Windsor Farm Shop’s Platinum Jubilee tea is harvested from. PMD Tea is served at leading hotels and luxury resorts and is best known for its Golden Tip Teas served opposite Buckingham Palace in London.
PMD Tea Managing Director Dananjaya Silva comments: “PMD Tea is proud to be associated with the House of Windsor and to participate in the Queen’s upcoming platinum Jubilee celebrations. As the exclusive proud supplier to the Royal Farms Windsor Farm shop, PMD Tea has furthered the legacy of Pure Ceylon Tea and excelled in producing the best of the best teas from Sri Lanka to the world. We are proud to have Sri Lankan teas chosen for such a high-profile event. The tea bushes planted by the Late Duke of Edinburgh are handpicked by descendants of the workers who met the Duke.
The teas that are exported to the UK from Sri Lanka reflect the wealth of local expertise as it is a complete Sri Lankan collaboration from the tea plantations managed by Kelani Valley Plantations PLC to Hixel Studios designers and the final packaging completed in Sri Lanka. The success of PMD Tea demonstrates that Sri Lanka branded teas can dominate on a global platform given the right expertise and prudent management.
Silva adds further: “Sri Lanka’s plantation sector urgently needs competent policies in place to leverage this national asset we have to encourage more local entrepreneurs and businesses to make their mark on the global stage. Boosting tea exports on an urgent footing is the answer to the current foreign exchange crisis.”
The Queen and Duke of Edinburgh visited former Ceylon in 1954. It was the first tour to the island by a reigning Monarch. The 10-day tour included the opening of Parliament, visits to ancient cultural sites of Anuradapura and Polonnaruwa and to the hill station of Nuwara Eliya. The Duke who was not new to the island, having been stationed there during World War 2. As part of the visit to hill country, the Duke opened the current Pedro Tea Factory and helped plant a new field of tea bushes. P.M. David Silva & Sons was established in 1945 during the Plantation Raj in Ceylon’s world-famous Maskeliya Valley.