Harney and Sons visited Amba Estate from the U.S. to understand more about our tea production and ethos. They carefully source their teas worldwide and build relationships with their suppliers to ensure ethical sourcing.
Tea making film clips
Mike Peteresen of Tealet visited Amba to film our tea making and to discuss our workers share fund which gives back 10% of sales income to the workforce.
Our "Thieves' brew" is made in the same way that the estate workers and villagers used to make their own tea at home, in order to do this they had to "steal" the leaves and so the practise was outlawed. One of the estate workers Sudumenike remembered her mother making tea and taught me how to make it in the bungalow before we have even built the factory. This is one of our very first batches. This unique hand-made Thieves' brew tea is for sale amongst our black teas.
After more than 9 months of experimenting with microscopic batches of tea in the bungalow and generating our first order with Harney and Sons that was made in the bungalow and sun dried we decided to convert some old line rooms into a micro tea factory.
"Plucky Tea" making experiments in the bungalow before the factory was built. We had no equipment as such just a few bowls and we dried the tea outside in the sun.
The Myabab tea farmers co-operative in Cameroon contacted me to learn about hand-made teas. I was referred to as "Ma Beverly" in a series of letters and eventually they posted out their very first tea samples for me to taste which took many weeks to arrive.
I experimented with all kinds of hand-tied teas and eventually created a tea star - just one. I was so excited I photographed the whole process. It seemed simple however it took many months of trying to work replicate that first star and work out a production method.
We had a visit from Canton Tea based in the UK. This is a short video of hand-rolling.
White tea stars.
Canton tea visited us from the UK because they believe in creating good relationships with their suppliers and care about ethical sourcing. This is a blog about their short time at Amba
Tealet visited Amba several times from the US because they take great care to ethically source their tea and to create "grower profiles" for their customers so that they can understand more about where the tea comes from.
An article by Elyse Petersen of Tealet following her visit to Amba Estate.
Susie Walker-Munro created "Kinnettles Gold" a 100% Scottish black tea and I worked as a tea consultant to advise her about tea production