We source our teas from small family farms around Asia, many of whom still make tea almost entirely by hand, guided by generations of wisdom.
It would be easier and cheaper to buy mass-produced tea, but we choose small-batch teas because:
It's better for the earth
Monoculture areas are limited with small family farms, allowing more biodiversity to flourish. Some of the farmers we source from are practicing permaculture methods. For example, our Red Jade with Bergamot is made by an organic farm in Taiwan, where they grow a perimeter of bergamot plants around the tea plants as a natural form of pesticide. Hand-shredded strips of bergamot are mixed in with the tea to create this elevated version of Earl Grey tea.
The tea tastes better
Smaller farms tend to have more biodiversity, enriching the soil, which in turn provides a wider variety of nutrients to the tea plants. The teas we get from small farms tend to have richer, more layered and more interesting flavour profiles.
It supports craftsmanship
For most of the farms we source from, tea is made entirely by hand from start to finish, all under the watchful supervision of the tea master. The tea master doesn't rely on formulas, but makes decisions based on the look, smell and feel of the leaves at every stage, adjusting for weather conditions and harvest quality. It takes decades to gain this kind of experience, which is traditionally passed down from generation to generation. The sad truth is, as machines take over, there are fewer people learning these skills.
We want to honour this craftsmanship, and the livelihoods of the farmers, by increasing demand for small-batch, handcrafted tea.
The flavours vary
When tea is grown and produced by hand in small batches, you can really taste the environmental and human impact. The same tea from different (even neighbouring) farms tastes different. And from the same farm, the flavour varies with each harvest, along with the weather.
While this is problematic for tea companies that promise a consistent flavour to their customers, we invite our customers to connect with the people and environment that made the tea, and to treasure its transient beauty.