Our tasting tea-m is currently touring our Fairtrade estates in Africa and has just sent this update:
“We were now visiting Kanyenya tea estate, an old spacious factory built in 1974, and the owners are currently investing in ongoing renovation through funding from Fairtrade investors such as Clipper.
The teas tasted have been the best so far in Kenya. The catchment area of Kanyenya factory has approx 9500 small farmers supplying leaf which means that its support is felt across the region.
We went on to visit various Fairtrade projects including leaf collection centres that have been fitted with electricity making them safer in the evening and better equipped for weighing the leaf.
We then drove on through very different landscape, more similar to Sri Lanka and South India with beautiful mountainous countryside. Tea is clearly the main cash crop and source of income along with maize, banana and guava and farmers seem content, children are well clothed and clearly very happy and it is clear that tea is providing many positive benefits for these people.
Late afternoon after a 2 hour drive south we arrived at Makomboki Tea Factory where we bumped into some management and a large number of farmers from other Fairtrade tea factories and small holder arrangements supported by Clipper.
Makomboki produces black teas and has a good reputation for high quality within the trade. After a good tour of the factory, discussions with the production manager and a tea tasting we left for another 2 hour drive back to Nairobi before leaving for Uganda the next day.”