Leading tea and coffee brand, Taylors of Harrogate, has developed an innovative 10-year programme to improve the livelihoods of its tea farmers in Kenya and achieve its CarbonNeutral® sourcing goal.

Sowing the Seeds for Supplier Resilience

After water, tea is the most-drunk beverage in the world, consumed at a rate of three billion cups a day; but changing weather, competition for land, and the migration of agricultural workers to cities, mean tea as we know it is under threat. Through a collaborative, long-term approach to addressing supplier resilience, the Yorkshire-based family business aims to achieve CarbonNeutral® sourcing by 2020.  The programme, which works with smallholder tea farmers in Kenya to plant one million trees, not only delivers carbon sequestration, but also training on conservation farming to enhance land productivity and new income streams from fruit trees and beekeeping to improve financial security.

“We could have bought carbon credits as a quick-win solution to achieving our carbon neutral goal, but that’s not the way we do business here," Simon Hotchkin, Head of Sustainable Development at Taylors of Harrogate said. "Our top quality tea comes from the Mt Kenya region and so ensuring its continued availability is critical to the future of our business. We wanted an approach that would protect and enhance production while improving the livelihoods of our suppliers and their communities, which in turn would safeguard the supply and quality of our tea. This programme with Natural Capital Partners delivers on all fronts.”

Read the full article on The Crowd here, and find out more about the programme and our Project Catalyst solution here.