Many tea farmers are trapped in a system that is unfair and however hard they work to provide us with our everyday cuppa, they simply aren’t paid what they deserve. If we, as consumers, think it is ok to pay pennies for our cup of tea, we then become a part of the problem. We can end this today by choosing Fairtrade Tea. Isn't it a crying shame that out of all the available Fairtrade tea in the world, only 7% is actually sold as Fairtrade and this is a direct result of the choices we as consumers make.
We at Suki Tea strive to grow our business in a sustainable way that respects and values people, plant and the planet. To operate responsibly, we hold ourselves to the high standards of independent certification.
Suki Tea advocates buying FAIRTRADE Tea and other Fairtrade products which helps to support communities in the developing world, promoting decent working conditions and fair pay for the workers and farmers and supporting local sustainability. In 2016 71% of our tonnage sold were Fairtrade teas from 5 producer organisations, equating to a contribution to the local communities throughout India, China and East Africa of approximately $45,000. This premium was used in projects like the supply of clean drinking water to 10,000 families in Sorwathe Tea Gardens and surrounding areas in Rwanda. School construction and bursaries for children of Tea plantation workers to attend secondary school and university, as well as diversification such as pig husbandry.
As well as guaranteeing that producers are paid fairly, Fairtrade certification provides an additional social premium for growers, which they can use to develop the business or pay for community projects – as is democratically determined by workers at the heart of the business.
In addition to the Fairtrade premium paid on purchases, Suki Tea also pay the licence fee of 1.7% of for every kilo of Fairtrade tea sold. According to Fairtrade Foundation, in 2015 tea farmers and estate workers earned more than $6.3m in Premiums, which they invested mainly in social projects, such as education, healthcare, and infrastructure. Watch farmers in Kenya and Tanzania talk about the impact of the Premium on their lives.
Within our range we have some more complex blends and recipes, meaning that not every product in our range can be sourced as Fairtrade. We are proud to report that 99% of our plain black, green and Earl Grey tea sales are Fairtrade Certified. Our aim is to reach 100% by January 2018.
You can find out more on how to support Fairtrade by buying Fairtrade products here: www.fairtrade.org.uk
Join us the Fairtrade Fortnight and Put Fairtrade In Your Break, keep an eye on our blog for more details of how you can get involved. Fairtrade Fortnight runs from 27th February - 12th March 2017.