Small-Scale Tea Economy and Arsla Organic Tea Cooperative A Grassroots Initiative of Khasi Tribes of Meghalaya, North-East India

This paper is an attempt to explore the Small-Scale Tea Economies in North-East India. Of late, it is seen that most of the tribes in the North-East have engaged into tea cultivation. As per the Tea Board of India (2019), there are 110,422 Small Tea Growers (STGs) spread over 47 districts in the region. The ‘Arsla Organic Tea Growers and Producers Cooperative’ model was innovated by Khasi Tribes of Meghalaya way back in 2013 with an objective to improve their scale of operation into processing and marketing. In 2020, a global pandemic affected their production and marketing channel due to their inexperience in the tea industry and particularly marketing. The Sub-Regional Office (SRO) of Tea Board of India has also failed to strengthen their extension services to the Cooperative.