How much do you really know about the tea you drink

New Tea Range Aims to Address a Global Imbalance of Power

Traidcraft, the original fair trade pioneer, has launched a new range of Fairtrade Certified teas.

In 1979, Traidcraft imported the very first fair trade tea into the UK and the company is still at the forefront of fair trade tea development today. In a world where fair trade seems common place, Traidcraft is steaming ahead to find new ways to make their tea even better, with further reaching ethical impact.

The teas from the range, including Breakfast Blend teabags, Earl Grey teabags, and Breakfast Blend loose leaf tea, is full of authentic, fresh tea flavours thanks to Leaf Lock True Taste©, a unique process which protects the leaves on the journey between being plucked from the bush to being brewed in your teapot. The range also includes Breakfast Blend decaffeinated teabags.

While enjoying the new Traidcraft fair trade range, you will know that you’re drinking a brew that has travelled thousands of miles from the skilled hands of tea farmers straight to the cup you hold in your palm.

Robin Roth, chief executive at Traidcraft said: “We’re a nation of tea drinkers, but how much do we really know about the tea that we drink and where it comes from? At Traidcraft, we’re pioneering the future of fair trade and by buying fair trade, you’re ensuring that the farmers, growers and suppliers are all paid a fair price, are given direct access to markets and are treated with respect as equals – all of which we think makes our tea taste even better.

“With every sip you will experience the true taste of tea and know you’ve helped to address a global imbalance of power in the world of trade, spanning thousands of miles around the globe.”

Whilst a lot of the tea that we drink is produced on large plantations and estates across India, East Africa and Sri Lanka, and picked by employed labourers who work long hours for notoriously low wages, Traidcraft fair trade tea is sourced from carefully selected small-scale farms in Kenya and Malawi, transforming the lives of thousands of people through fair trade.

The launch of the new tea range comes almost 40 years after Traidcraft imported the very first fair trade tea into the UK.

Patricia Mutangili is the youngest member of her family to be growing tea at the Ndima Tea Factory which can be found on the southern slopes of Mt Kenya. She inherited 1,000 stems of tea from her father, some of which has been grown by the family for generations: Visit Patricia’s home and you soon discover that very little happens without a cup of tea to hand. Thermos flasks of tea are ready to be enjoyed throughout the day, and she’s always ready to talk about the importance of tea as a drink and a crop.

Patricia said, “It is family land but we each have our own particular tea. I have had my 1,000 stems for three or four years. Some of my tea is older than I am. When we are kids we start drinking tea and we have never tired of it. We make tea in the morning and that is when we get water. After lunch we take tea. At four we take tea, and we take tea again before we go to sleep. We meet with a friend and say, ‘let me buy you a cup of tea!” Robin added: “I am proud that we have worked with producers like Patricia for many years. Traidcraft stands for changing people’s lives through trade, saving vanishing skills from extinction, and celebrating a world of creativity, flavour, and culture.”

Did you know…

  • The British drink around 165 million cups of tea every day, adding up to 60.2 billion cups every year.
  • All tea is made from the same plant! Whether it is black, oolong, green, white or pu-erh – all tea is made from the leaves and leaf buds of the camellia sinensis plant. Think of it as the same way that all wine comes from the grape, albeit different varieties. It is how the leaves and buds are treated that produce different types of tea.
  • People have been drinking tea since around 2700 BC in China but it’s only since the late 1600s that the brew made it to British shores. It wasn’t until Traidcraft imported the first fair trade tea in the 1980s that people in the UK started to learn more about the origins of the tea we drink.
  • The world’s largest tea bag as recorded by the Guinness World Records weighed in at over 551lbs and measured 10 feet wide and 13 feet high. It could have been used to brew over 100,000 cups of tea!
  • One of the health benefits of tea is antioxidants. Your body uses antioxidants to protect and heal cells. Believe it or not, tea contains approximately ten times the level of antioxidants found in the equivalent amount of fruits and vegetables.

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