As you may be aware, Fair Trade is a movement that promotes increased standards of living for labourers of developing countries. The focus on export products which ensures that a fair amount of profits remain in workers hands.
As of 2007, some Estates are beyond the scope of fair trade. I can assure you that the blenders I choose to get my tea leaves from do what they can to ensure that their suppliers adhere to fair practices for their own workers and any freehold tea growers who supply their factories.
Governance is accomplished primarily through an Ethical Tea Partnership (ETP). The ETP is a tea industry initiative set in place to regulate all facets of the manufacturer to ensure ethical practices are adhered to. Fair Trade deals with many different commodities, the ETP is 100% focused on tea and is quickly becoming a highly respected and trusted overseer.
It is important to note, that exceptional teas are not produced by a workforce under duress but produced by a fair, compensated and healthy workforce. They have a vested economic and social interest in their product which in many cases includes free schooling, medication for families and fair prices for fresh leaves.
The blenders that I choose my Premium Loose Leaf Tea from are doing business with the top 10% of the world’s estates and make annual visits to the plantation to ensure this is always a practise. This results in higher wages, more employment and better TEA for all of us. Some are also members of the Roots Campaign which means, when the Blenders company grows, their purchases result in a meaningful change to the lives of the producing partners as well as their employees.
For the Love of Tea,