The effects of climate change on tea quality mediated by insect herbivory

Abstract

The most popular beverage in the world, tea, is made from the leaves of the tea plant (Camellia sinensis). The flavor, aroma, and health benefits of tea are determined by plant secondary metabolites. Changes in tea secondary metabolites such as caffeine, catechins, amino acids, and volatiles, are all known to be induced by various biotic and abiotic stressors. However, less is known about how plants respond to a range of intensities or combinations of stressors. As climate change intensifies, tea farmers in many regions are likely to experience an increase in pest insect populations as a result of warmer weather and increasing frequency of drought. My research focuses on the effects of pests across a range of intensities and combined with drought on secondary metabolites important for tea quality.

Date
Links