One of the most important tea sourcing regions for Equal Exchange is Darjeeling, India, a municipality of the West Bengal state located in the foothills of the Himalayas, just under Nepal. Since early June there have been widespread protests and strikes, and the entire area - including the entire tea industry - has been shut down for over 60 days. The reason for the unrest is the fight for Gorkhaland.
Our Fair Trade and organic teas come from our small farmer partners in India, Sri Lanka and South Africa. Most teas on the shelf - even Fair Trade teas - come from plantations, where tea workers have little say.
Our organic black teas are classic, bold blends you know and love. They are delicious brewed as-is, or with cream and sugar.
With known health benefits and natural caffeine, our organic green teas are a great choice to start your day or liven your afternoon.
Our selection of organic herbal teas are naturally decaffeinated, making them the perfect choice for when you want a calming, soothing drink.
Wupperthal Original Rooibos Co-operative
In 1998 against all odds, Wupperthal Original Rooibos Cooperative was established. Wupperthal is a democratically organized group of small-scale farmers who have grown Rooibos in South Africa for generations.
The Small Farmer Tea Project
The members of the Small Farmer’s Tea Project (SFTP) in Kerala, India are predominantly marginalized small producers and members of tribal groups who have suffered from social and economic injustice for generations. The goal of the SFTP is to bring its members economic growth and control.
Tea Promoters India
Equal Exchange has worked with Tea Promoters of India (TPI) since 1998. TPI has been a pioneer in bringing environmental and social reform to the tea industry. TPI is a Darjeeling-based family operation that manages six organic, Fair Trade tea gardens.
From the Blog
February 28, 2017
Equal Exchange has worked in the tea industry for more than 20 years. Our tea program is still relatively small, but we have leveraged our limited volume to support and strengthen a number of small-scale farmer groups in India and Sri Lanka. Small farmer cooperatives are incredible rare in the tea industry which was built on colonial plantations from the ground up. When considering the larger industry context, it is remarkable that our small-scale tea co-op partners exist at all.Leif Rawson-Ahern