Our vision is of a thriving tea industry that is socially just and environmentally sustainable. Among other things, this means:
- Good human resource practices are in place
- Workers are treated fairly and with respect
- Women are treated equally and have good opportunities
- Child labour issues are appropriately addressed
- Smallholders and workers make a decent living from tea
- The environment is managed responsibly (water, soil, agrochemicals, energy, greenhouse gas/CO2 emissions)
- Producers meet international standards (social, labour, and environmental)
We work with producers and smallholder farmers that supply tea to ETP members. Together with a range of partner organisations we focus our efforts in four key areas.
We help ensure that tea producers and smallholders meet international social and environmental standards. We do this through auditing of producers, supporting certification, and providing expert training on key areas such as health and safety, good human resource management, fair and equal opportunities, and good environmental management practices. Ultimately this makes tea estates and processing factories better and safer for the people that grow and produce tea.
Many of the countries where tea is grown are poor and face deep-rooted problems that require a huge amount of change. These include poor nutrition, harassment and discrimination of women/minority groups, and child exploitation to name a few. Our work with strategic partners is helping to address these issues on tea estates for the betterment of workers, their families, and tea communities around the world.
In Asia and Africa there are about 7 million smallholder farmers growing tea. Many of them struggle to make a decent living for a variety of reasons including: small farms, poor soil quality, and a lack of money to invest in new tea bushes, fertilisers, and water harvesting and irrigation systems. The effects of climate change compound many of these problems. We’re improving the viability of farmers’ incomes by helping them improve the quality and productivity of their plots by providing training and support, as well as helping them access international markets.
We help producers and farmers improve their management of the environment to help protect soil, water, and wildlife. Part of this work includes training farmers and workers on how to use agrochemicals correctly and safely. We’re also helping the tea sector to understand the implications of climate change and to become more resilient to changing weather patterns and growing conditions it brings.