Ethics are incredibly important to Barry’s Tea. Just like we support our community at home, we believe in supporting the local communities we buy our tea from.
95% of our tea is bought directly through government agencies in East Africa. Why? Because these agencies represent small farmers and they help them get the best possible price for their tea. This ensures the development of the local economies, something we strongly believe in.
The Kenya Tea Development Authority (KTDA) was established in 1963 and has been incredibly successful at promoting the Kenyan tea industry. Farmers are paid by the quality and quantity of the tea they produce and Barry’s always pays above the average price.
Similar organisations exist in Uganda (UTGA) and Rwanda (OCIR). Following recent unrest in these countries, they were among the first organisations to be assisted with aid from the EU. Tea is consistently amongst the top foreign exchange earner and largest employer in all of these countries. This shows just how important the tea industries is to these local economies.
Our other main suppliers have proven themselves as well-run and ethical organisations. We’ve visited their estates in Assam, Kenya and India and were impressed by their excellent housing and medical facilities. Quite often, the tea estate’s medical centre is the only hospital in an area, so it’s a vital resource for the local community. Our suppliers also provide land and build schools for the children of the tea pickers. Again, Barry’s adopts the policy of paying prices which are above average for the benefit of the community.
To reinforce our commitment to supporting local communities and sustainability, we have recently started working with the Rainforest Alliance™.
We are very proud that the tea used in our much loved black tea product range are from Rainforest Alliance Certified™ farms.
The Rainforest Alliance is an international non-profit organization with over 30 years' experience in the development and promotion of sustainable agricultural standards. These standards help protect the environment and promote the well-being of workers, their families and their communities. To learn more about the Rainforest Alliance, visit www.rainforest-alliance.org.