STiR coffee and tea magazine

Volume 5, Number 1

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16 STiR tea & coffee industry international / Issue 1, 2016 (February/March) Tea Report: Jane Pettigrew CONGO M'bayo Factory Food Safe M. K. Shah Exports announced that they have received ISO 22000 and Food Safety Management (HACCP) certifica- tions at their M'bayo factory in Bakavu, Congo - both a first for any tea estate in the Democratic Republic of Congo. M. K. Shah has 12 tea estates in Assam and West Bengal and has been growing tea in Congo since 2014. The company is also the first in the Congo to complete building 'bungalows' and houses key executives residing on the tea estate, which is guarded by the military 24 hours a day. Jaydeep Shah explains, "The company hopes to increase confidence amongst the people of neighboring villages who fled due to earlier rebel activities in the area. "Our aim is to repopulate all the surrounding areas and provide them with means of livelihood as well as basic healthcare and thereby raise their standard of living eventually. We have already adopted a clinic in the neighbor- ing village and have tied up with a US Based NGO. The "M'bayo Clinic" now offers free basic medical procedures and treatments (including providing prosthet- ics for those wounded/maimed during the war). By 2017 we will also be building labor houses for our workers, in order to keep attracting more people from the neighboring areas to settle here. Repopu- lating these areas is important in order to realize our goal of establishing Congo's first tea-growers' cooperative." The teas made at M'bayo and the company's second Madaga factory have been well received at the Mombasa auctions and fetch higher prices than teas from Malawi, Uganda, Tanzania, and Mozam- bique. It is hoped that the teas will soon compete with higher medium grade teas from Kenya, Rwanda, and Burundi. INDIA Tata New 'Fusion' Tea Tata Tea launched its 'Fusion' blends of Superior Assam Black with Green Tea, and Superior Assam Black with Kenyan Tea late last year. The two teas for each 'Fusion product' (the Assam and the 'taste enhancer' green or the Kenyan tea) are packed separately in dual pouches or jars and allow tea lovers to customize their blend and prepare their tea exactly as they like it. Says Rishi Chadha, head of marketing at Tata Tea, "Tata Tea Fusion is a testimony of consumer centricity that is at the core of all our endeavors at Tata Tea. Fusion is the result of extensive market surveys that have provided us with the insight of creating tea which can be customized as per the consumers' liking. As well as featuring our superla- tive Assam tea which has continued to be a market champion, green and Kenyan are the best of the selections that brings quality and taste together. We are sure Fusion will be well appreciated by consumers." This is the first time that Tata has offered customers the option of creating their own customized blend based on Assam black tea. INDONESIA Steampunk in Jakarta Lewis & Carroll in Jakarta is the latest tea lounge to install a Steampunk brewer. Inspired by the works of C.S. Lewis and Charles Dodgson, alias Lewis Carroll (C.S. Lewis: "You can never get a cup of tea large enough or a book long enough to suit me." Lewis Carroll: "It's always tea time." ), each tea is carefully chosen for its visual artistry and aromatic attraction and then is carefully prepared in the innova- tive tea-brewing Steampunk by Alpha Dominche. In the UK, Good & Proper Tea Company is showcasing the machine in its new tea bar in London's Shoreditch, while Teastories café in Vienna was the first European teashop to install Steam- punk in May 2015. The 1872 Clipper Tea Company is using the Steampunk in Singapore. Thomas Perez, c.e.o. of Alpha Dominche said, "Specialty coffee has been huge for years, while the majority of tea shops are still of the old fashioned teapot variety. In the past 12 months, we've seen the Steampunk elevate the craftsmanship of tea to an artisanal level." Learn more from: Kristen@ KENYA Mars Supports Farmers International beverage company Mars Drinks runs a Mars Ambassador Program (MAP) which encourages Mars Associates to assist people in communi- ties around the world who support the business by adhering to the company's "responsibility" principle, stepping up, changing lives and building a better, stronger company and world. In April 2015, Jerry Whittle, Mars associate since 1998 based at the Hackettstown plant in New Jersey, applied for a MAP assignment and was chosen to work with the Mars Drinks Origin Program and the Ethical Tea Partnership (ETP) to help support sustainability and energy saving efforts for tea processing factories in Kenya. Starting in October 2015, Whittle toured six Kenya Tea Development Agency (KDTA) factories to conduct new energy audits and follow up on previously conducted audits, run training for factory workers on climate change, advice on energy-saving measures and best sustainability practices. Whittle explained "KTDA estimates that energy (electricity and fuel wood) account for 60% of the total cost of production at the factory. Therefore, saving energy is not only good for the environment but the Jerry Whittle, right, with Kenya staff M'Bayo garden workers

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