Fair Trade Teas
What is Fair Trade?
Fair Trade isn’t just a marketing term or badge of certification. It’s a global movement. One that is empowering individuals, building strong communities, and taking important steps to protect our planet. It’s a movement that is a world-changing way of doing business, and Teatulia is proud to be part it.
Since its inception in 2000, our tea garden has been practicing everything Fair Trade stands for. The garden produces high quality tea using sustainable practices that protect the environment and improve the lives of the local Bangladeshi community.”
— Linda Appel Lipsius, Teatulia Co-founder and CEO
The first Fair Trade garden in Bangladesh.
Teatulia Organic Teas’ own tea garden, Kazi & Kazi Tea Estate Limited (KKTE), was the first certified organic garden in Bangladesh and is now the first Fair Trade Certified tea garden in the region.
Through Fair Trade certification, Teatulia’s KKTE tea garden joins a network that benefits more than 1.6 million farmers in 46 developing countries around the world. To become Fair Trade Certified, Teatulia met rigorous standards to prove the garden promotes safe and healthy working conditions, acts as a steward of the environment, and enables the community to improve its economic conditions.
Who certified Teatulia’s garden as Fair Trade?
Teatulia’s KKTE tea garden is certified by Fair Trade USA, a nonprofit 501(c)3 organization and a leading third-party certifier of Fair Trade products in the United States.
Fair Trade USA audits and certifies transactions between U.S. companies and their international suppliers to guarantee that the farmers and workers producing Fair Trade Certified goods are paid fair prices and wages, work in safe conditions, protect the environment, and receive community development funds to empower and uplift their communities.
Fair Trade USA educates consumers, brings new manufacturers and retailers into the Fair Trade system and provides farmers with tools, training, and resources to thrive as international businesspeople. Organizations like Fair Trade USA support a global model that believes economic empowerment and sustainable livelihoods are the basis for a market that works for everyone, not just businesses.
How does Teatulia’s tea garden meet Fair Trade standards?
Fair Trade Certification isn’t just a one-and-done deal. It’s an ongoing commitment. Businesses agree to make responsible and ethical decisions, empower their community socially and economically, treat their workers and the land with respect, engage in transparent business practices, and educate consumers about the importance of Fair Trade. Just a few of the ways Teatulia’s garden meets and upholds key Fair Trade standards:
Promoting healthy & safe working conditions:
Teatulia’s KKTE tea garden was established as a social enterprise to provide jobs in an impoverished region of Northern Bangladesh. The tea garden employs more than 700 workers, paying them a real living wage with reasonable working hours and access to healthcare and education programs. Cultivating and picking tea in Teatulia’s organic garden means workers enjoy a healthy environment, free from chemicals and pesticides that not only destroy the environment but can be toxic to human health if inhaled and ingested.
Stewards of the environment:
Teatulia’s KKTE tea garden is a USDA-organic certified tea garden and is cultivated using only natural and clean farming practices. The garden is completely sustainable, relying only on reclaimed water and banning the use of chemicals, pesticides, or fertilizers. Through these natural practices, Teatulia has not only protected the environment but improved it. What was once barren land has been regenerated into more than 3,000 acres of lush paradise. Plant and animal species that haven’t been seen in decades are returning, and the organic farming practices are ensuring the land can be cultivated safely and successfully for generations to come. Teatulia also pioneered an environmentally friendly tea packaging concept—an eco-canister made from 100% recyclable and compostable materials. In addition, Teatulia got rid of strings, tags, and staples from its tea bags, taking steps to keep waste out of landfill and reduce its overall global footprint.
Lifting the community out of poverty:
Teatulia supports 1,700+ community members through its farming cooperative, the Kazi Shahid Foundation. The co-op teaches organic farming, allowing members to not only feed their families but also strengthen their socio-economic condition by earning a profit on their crops. In addition, the co-op supports a unique cattle-lending program where women in the community are loaned dairy cows in exchange for cow dung used as compost for the tea garden. This innovative dairy program has increased both monthly milk production and monthly incomes by 300 percent. The co-op also offers education programs that have improved literacy rates by 50 percent or more and graduated more than 370 of its members, giving these students better chances for employment and successful participation in their local economy.
“Our tea garden’s Fair Trade certification is the culmination of everything we’ve been supporting for more than a decade: sending children to school, teaching women to read and calculate their wages, providing families with the opportunity to escape poverty, and allowing farmers to cultivate organic crops that rejuvenate their land for generations to come”
— Linda Appel Lipsius, Teatulia Co-founder and CEO
How do consumers benefit from Fair Trade?
When you choose to purchase Fair Trade products, you can be sure they were made according to rigorous social, environmental, and economic standards. As a consumer, buying Fair Trade products means taking a stand for a system that treats the planet and its people with respect. You are endorsing an economic system that provides opportunities for international farmers, artisans, and workers to lift themselves out of poverty. Essentially, you are supporting a movement that strives to do what’s right for the world.