Who picked my tea? Ask your favourite brand if their tea is slavery-free

Traidcraft Exchange are Asking: Who Picked My Tea?

What tea brand do you drink? Did you know that many tea blends include tea from Assam, where people get poverty wages, are scared to speak up and have no way out. We launched this campaign to call on six big brands to publish a list of the list of the plantations in Assam they are sourcing from.  One of which is the company behind Lipton, probably the world’s best-known tea brand, PG Tips and Tazo – Unilever.

People like Maloti (pictured above) work long hours in the tea gardens carrying heavy loads, often without proper equipment or even shoes.  Workers are paid just £1.50 a day, and the services the estates are supposed to provide – like housing, clinics and schools – are often poor quality or even non-existent.

“They don’t repair the houses. We register complaints to the management, they note it down, but that remains in the register, they give no importance.”

These appalling conditions leave workers vulnerable to trafficking as they seek better opportunities for their children. Girls fall victim to the ‘Tea Maid Trade’, duped into domestic servitude and sexual slavery.1 The situation is well-known to the tea industry, which has been buying tea from Assam for years. Unilever (Lipton and PG Tips) has the power to challenge Assam tea estate owners and improve their own buying practices.

Since launching, Yorkshire Tea, Twinings, Tata (Tetley), Clipper and now Unilever (PG Tips and Lipton) have all stepped up and published full lists of their tea suppliers in Assam making transparency the norm. As a major global company responsible for bringing us some of our most-loved tea brands, they are helping us know, who picked my tea?

That’s why we are joining Traidcraft Exchange in calling on Unilever to do the right thing and step up on behalf of people like Maloti. Four major brands have listened to our call and now we are calling on Typhoo to join them.

So please add your voice and ask Typhoo: “Who picked my tea?”

  • May 24, 2019: It’s been a year since thousands of supporters joined the call demanding big tea companies to answer the question: “who picked my tea?” Now, workers on tea plantations know under which brand’s code of conduct they are protected. But their struggle is not over. Our partner, Traidcraft Exchange, will be sharing your messages of support with tea workers in Assam so that they know we are still with them in the fight for better conditions and pay. Make sure yours is included by posting your message in the comments section below!

  • April 12, 2019: We did it! Typhoo becomes the final big tea company to answer: who picked my tea? You can read their full list of suppliers in Assam here. Want to know how you helped? Take a look at Simon’s journey and how he got Typhoo to act.

  • January 30, 2019: Well done, Unilever! The company behind some of our best-loved tea brands has published a full list of their tea suppliers in Assam. Now you can enjoy your cup of Lipton or PG Tips knowing who picked your tea.

  • November 15, 2018: Clipper becomes the fourth tea company to publish a full list of its tea suppliers in Assam – only two more tea companies to go! Want to know more? Read how UK companies can help break the cycle of poverty wages on Assam’s tea plantations here.

  • November 2, 2018: Tetley becomes the third big tea company to publish a list of its suppliers! Tetley is the world’s second largest tea company so we hope their decision to increase transparency in their supply chain will encourage others to do the same.

  • Jun 05, 2018: Campaign Launches

Chip in and help end modern slavery once and for all.

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Joan Mason
Joan Mason
2 years ago

I think it’s disgusting that this still going on. We should do what the women did about the sugar slavery we should stop buying tea until these poor people get treated much better.

Krzysztof
1 year ago

Consumer awareness is growing and it’s good.

Ruth Hawe
2 years ago

Challenge slavery, call it out, stop supporting it!

Ruth Hawe
2 years ago

CHALLENGE SLAVERY, CALL IT OUT, STOP SUPPORTING IT, BE A CONSCIOUS CONSUMER OF THE LIVES AND ENERGY OF OTHERS, WHATEVER THEIR SPECIES… ps VEGANS HAVE SMALLER FOOTPRINTS 🙂

This Campaign made an impact with 3,217 supporters!

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