Our Take on Tea Sustainability
Our Sustainability Mission
Authentic Tea Origins
Chinese tea has a rich cultural history which we would like to help preserve and showcase to the western world. Each region, terroir, climate is different and thus the tea from each tea garden is unique. Think about it as wines from individual estates. The origin is the one single factor that contributes to most premiums on Chinese teas. Not only does this ensure the finest of the craftsmanship and the taste, it works in the same direction on our sustainability mission: transparency on the traceability of the tea.
Sourcing from the authentic single tea gardens goes hand in hand with connecting tea producers and their communities to the world.
We want to share with you the true story from China about tea: the best teas from core production areas rarely make it outside of China. Through our connections and relationships with tea masters there, we are assured of no usage of synthetic pesticides, herbicides and fertilizers. These facts are inherent with the tea production processes: for example, our first flush green teas are harvested only once a year in early Spring when the temperature is still low and after the soil has fully recovered from winter, eliminating the need for pesticides and fertilizers.
By this year, around 50% of our imported teas are from suppliers with Organic Certificates. The rest of the sources are as compliant as can be in fulfilling EU import standards on tea: one of the most strenuous standards in the world.
The reason why we don’t choose only Organic products is because first, there are conflicting definitions of what constitutes an organic product worldwide. Secondly, investing in a global certification is expensive while a lot of good teas have more than enough demand domestically which makes it a low priority to obtain one. We try to find a balance between sourcing from renowned international organic labels and at the same time not being restricted on introducing the finest tasting teas from smaller, more exclusive sources.
Loose Leaf Tea vs Tea Bags
The traditional Chinese way of drinking tea: Gongfucha happens to be one of the most sustainable methods in our opinion. Instead of steeping the tea bags only once, the same amount of loose leaves can be used up to 10 times. Each infusion releases the full flavors of the tea itself.
Not only does it make full use of the tea leaves and save the cost per cup, loose leaf tea saves considerably on packaging.
Cha Moods selects also built-to-last ceramic and porcelain teawares that enable this sustainable style of drinking tea.
Plastic Free Packaging
Our long term goal is: to achieve a balance between preserving the freshness of the tea, and minimizing carbon/environmental footprints. That is to provide only biodegradable or easily recycled packaging.
Kickstarting our brand last year, we managed to achieve the lower hanging fruits in this one: we made sure our packaging contained as little oil-based plastic as possible.
However, we believe that right now the ideal solution does not exist, as when measuring the entire carbon footprint, it is even hard to say if an aluminum packaging would have more or less than that of plastic. We have faith that the sustainable packaging industry is moving so quickly that we are hopeful of a solution imminently and we commit to making the switch as soon as we find it.
Stay tuned for a fun attempt of us making a home garden with our tasting set packaging.