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Archives for posts tagged ‘Ethical Tea Partnership’

This Is Why Bigelow Tea Is A Member Of The Ethical Tea Partnership (ETP)

Have you ever thought about the tea leaves in your bag of Bigelow Tea? Not simply the delicious flavor they offer, but the story behind them? Where they come from? Who sourced them? If not, that’s okay. But, at Bigelow Tea, this is something that’s very important to us. It’s one of the reasons why we’re a member of the Ethical Tea Partnership (ETP), an organization that works with tea growers to establish methods for responsible conservation of the world’s tea fields, and to improve the lives of the beautiful people who work them. In fact, Bigelow Tea was the sixth North American tea company to join the group. Consider it just one of the ways the company is showing its commitment to the tea growers and producers, and, well, sustainability.

As a family-owned company for three generations, Bigelow Tea’s culture has always been guided by the simple principle of doing the right thing. Seems simple, right? But it can take hard work with all the moving parts that go into a company. Sustainability and fair business practices are important in every aspect of our business, not only here at home but
around the world. That’s why we’re proud to be part of ETP, and why we think it’s extra critical for the industry to work collaboratively to make the tea industry truly sustainable.
And, hey, here is a really awesome way where the ETP aims to end poverty, fight inequality, and tackle climate change by 2030.

  • The ETP, in partnership with UNICEF and with the support of the Indian tea industry, is working across more than 100 tea estates to equip more than 25,000 girls with the necessary knowledge and skills that will help them secure a better future and reduce their vulnerability to violence, abuse, and exploitation including trafficking and unsafe migration.

Pretty incredible stuff, right? So the next time you brew some Bigelow, you’re not just making tea – you’re making a big difference through initiatives around the globe. That’s a cup you can feel super good about, and one worth sharing with the world. We always want you to #TeaProudly, after all!

Learn Why Bigelow Uses Tea From Sri Lanka


bigelow tea sri lankaHigh in the mountains of Sri Lanka grow acres of gorgeous tea plants renowned for yielding a light, bright brew prized as “the champagne of teas.” Bigelow Tea founder Ruth Campbell Bigelow fell in love with tea from the region and initiated a partnership that has endured for 67 years! Third-generation President and CEO Cindi Bigelow was thrilled to visit this tiny island country in South Asia to meet the folks who expertly hand-pick tea leaves used in Bigelow’s black teas.

For a rare peek inside the tea gardens of Sri Lanka, check out Cindi’s Sri Lanka journal and videos. And here are a few more interesting facts highlighting why Bigelow Tea embraces Sri Lankan tea producers as part of its extended global family:

  • The British planted the first camellia sinensis (tea) plant in Sri Lanka in the 1800s following a blight that had wiped out the coffee crop, sparking new traditions built around tea farming.
  • Today, tea cultivation is a $1.5 billion industry in Sri Lanka employing more than 1 million people who produce the world’s most expensive tea.
  • Before 1972, while under British colonization, the island was known as “Ceylon.” Hence tea from Sri Lanka is still called Ceylon tea.
  • Every tea estate in Sri Lanka with which Bigelow Tea does business is part of the Ethical Tea Partnership, which promotes fair treatment of workers and sustainable farming practices.
  • With high elevations that can exceed 6,000 feet, Sri Lankan tea gardens boast extremely favorable soil and weather conditions for growing delicate tea plants.
  • Each Sri Lankan estate prides itself on producing signature teas—much the same way vintners age wines for different tastes.

Enjoy the delicious results in your mug of Bigelow black tea! @Daniela441 tweeted his love for English Teatime. What’s your favorite Bigelow black tea blend?

Take Your Pick Of Bigelow Teas From The Camellia Sinensis Plant

bigelow tea plantWhen it comes to multitasking, it’s tough to top the camellia sinensis plant. This mighty bush is the single source for three types of tea offered by Bigelow Tea: black, green and oolong! How long the newly plucked leaves are fermented (exposed to air) determines the final tea variety. Third-generation President and CEO Cindi Bigelow shares more fun facts about the process in this video.

Regardless of which type of tea you prefer, rest assured that Bigelow Tea takes great care to work with the world’s best growers and suppliers of each one. Here’s a closer look at how your favorite brew makes the delicious transition from crop to cup:

  • Blackgreen and oolong teas all begin with the top two leaves in a bud plucked from a camellia sinensis plant.
  • Leaves destined to be black teas are immediately exposed to air for six to eight hours, dried and then chopped. Bigelow Tea’s black teas are sourced primarily from high-elevation gardens in Sri Lanka and India that adhere to the highest standards for quality and growing practices set by the Ethical Tea Partnership.
  • Green teas are unfermented, which means they are steamed or pan-fried without being exposed to air, then dried and chopped.
  • Oolong teas are partially fermented by being exposed to air for about three hours.
  • Herbal “teas” blend fruits, herbs and spices but do not contain actual tea leaves.

So go ahead – take your pick from Bigelow Tea’s 130+ varieties (check out Twitter fan @tiredapplestar‘s drawer full of choices!) – and enjoy the purity in every sip, along with new-found knowledge about the plant that makes tea possible!