Our mission is to take you on a voyage into tea culture that will lead you to a completely new way of drinking tea.
Zero chemical fertilizers
Biodiverse tea farms
Organic / Fair-Trade / Direct-Trade
We want to stay healthy, and offer healthy products to you. So yes, we are totally geeky and nerdy and geek out over things like the environment.
We only purchase certified organic and fair-trade teas from Canadian wholesalers and work to support small-scale global tea farming by buying direct from farms in Sri Lanka, China and India (and hopefully soon Japan). The farms (or plantations) that we work with are small. Less than 15 hectars in size, they practice organic agriculture, and are working towards certification, or they practice biodynamic farming - natural in all its beauty. One farm we are very happy to support is Idulgashinna Organic and Biodynamic Farm in Sri Lanka (Stassen Teas).
It is hard being a small farmer, we get it.
We do what we can to support others.
Locally Grown and Wildharvested
From swathes of lavender to 'hobbit' sized carrots, we grow most of our herbs you see in our blends the way nature meant them to be - wild and free on our family property near Georgian Bay. Our organic growing practices sustain healthy, fertile soil ensuring the best herbs around and a cuppa tea fit for any fellowship.
When we can, we grow our own botanicals through our sister site Cottage Botanicals. We only use organic methods to farm, but are not certified. We aim to create a paradigm shift to challenge people's thinking of what conventional agriculture is, often referred to post-industrial revolution agriculture or conventional farming. When in fact conventional farming is organic farming, what humans and hobbits have been doing for millenia. So -
we live like Hobbits and work the land like Hobbits. Lots of compost, organic ammendments, left over tea leaves, lembas, grumpy dwarves ...
When we wildharvest, we harvest sustainably. Leaving more than half available for regeneration.
This just makes sense, doesn't it?
This is the hardest thing for us.
We want to make sure that our ecological footprint is as low as possible while offering amazing products. Although we have had to make some compromises, we choose packaging that is either reusable and recyclable (like our tea tins or jars) or reusable like our zip-closure bags.
We were using biodegradable/compostable bags but found the quality was not suited for transport and did not ensure freshness. It was quite brittle. We looked into the "rice" paper bags, then found out that they cannot be recycled as it is a mixed fibre (strands of plastic intertwined with rice). So we settled on plastic bags, which can be recycled in many facilities but not always, and always offer to refill these bags when possible.
The best way to reduce your footprint (and ours) is to use our recycled metal tins, and to buy the refillable size of our biobags. These eco-bags are biodegradable/compostable in most municipalities and only have a small paper label that is printed with soy based inks. They are the plain jane of the bunch, but all you do is drop them into your tin!
So you see, we aren't just sci-fi, Marvel, Whedon, Whovain, Hobbitses, Potterhead tea geeks; we are also environmental geeks.