We started The Organic Tea Project to introduce to the market the freshest, cleanest premium certified organic tea, free from chemicals and pesticides.
The process of tea production is a complicated one. To suppress disease, eliminate pests, boost production, and elongate shelf life, a cocktail of chemicals are used on crops which is inadequately washed off.
We sat down with silkscreen artist Kate Banazi to chat over a cup of organic Aryuvedic Tea. Kate has applied her craft to fashion, music, illustration and advertising. Her art is experimental, intuitive and playful, and her silkscreen work is currently focused on celebrating relationships, identity, movement, shadows and colour.
We’re all about sustainable organic agriculture; so when we learned of Pocket City Farms, hosting ‘Small Space Veggie Gardening’ workshops in Sydney, we felt it was well-worth talking about.
We know from our own experience that one of the best simple pleasures in life (well, aside from drinking a cup of freshly brewed tea) - is picking produce that you've nurtured from seed or seedling to a healthy crop of homegrown veggies, fruit, herbs and salads.
These nifty workshops teach participants how to do just that. You’ll learn how to turn neglected spaces, (think: spare plots and rooftops), into blooming veggie patches sprouting fresh organic produce. You'll also learn how to create and maintain healthy organic soil, understand the needs of plants, and how to work them into a space together to create a productive edible garden.
The next workshop is March 2nd at Pocket City Farms’ urban market garden located in the Camperdown Commons. This location is the first of its kind in Sydney and provides a unique setting and opportunity to learn new skills, get your hands dirty and bond over new experiences on a working farm in the city.
Whether you have a sprawling yard, a courtyard, a balcony or even a sunny window, we recommend paying Pocket City Farms a visit to find out more about how to turn your little space into a flourishing abundant crop of organic produce
So, if your horticultural ambitions are bigger than your plot size, ‘Small Space Veggie Gardening’ could be right up your ally.
Underline 2: http://www.pocketcityfarms.com.au/group-workshopsUnderline 3: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/small-space-veggie-gardening-tickets-53319058740?aff=ebdssbdestsearch
I'm an avid tea drinker who drinks several cups of loose-leaf tea every day. My usual steeping technique is to heat my single serve teapot with boiling water then empty and pour in hot water again, adding 2 teaspoons and brewing for 4 minutes. If making green tea it is crucial to add a dash of cold into the boiled water as steeping too hot or for too long results in the release of excessive amounts of tannins, leading to a bitter, astringent brew.
Our organic whole leaf Green Tea is grown in Darjeeling located at 6500 ft in the foothills of the Himalayas, like wine tea varies in flavour depending on it’s environment. Darjeeling has the perfect confluence of elements to make an amazing delicate tea, it marries the gentle, aromatic flavours with the clean taste of a traditional green tea. Unlike many green teas ours is hand plucked and processed using an artisanal method of steaming and then sun-drying.
Green and Black tea come from the same tea leaf but unlike Black tea that is fermented/oxidised and roasted, Green tea is simply steamed and then sun-dried thus retaining the highest levels of antioxidants.
Many of you may be familiar with Ayurvedic but for those of you that aren't, it is an ancient system of medicine from Indian culture. Literally translated 'Ayurvedic' means life-knowledge, which is why our Ayurvedic blend is the right accompaniment to moments of introspection, philosophical discussion or mindfulness.
The Ayurvedic approach considers three body types, or dosa's (pronounced dosha); vata, pitta and kapha. While one may be more pre-dominant, the idea is to balance all three to maintain health and minimise disease.
Our organic Aruyvedic blend is built around the Pitta dosha. It is a fantastic afternoon caffeine replacement because it is an organic herbal tea that is caffeine-free but it will still uplift your body from the inside out.
The blend features the a mix of chamomile that eases its way into the stomach however the use of cardamon, a touch of cinnamon and organic citrus peel challenge and move the digestive system. This keeps it active and busy so drowsiness is kept at bay. Brewing a mid strength pot every afternoon will leave you feeling light in the stomach but awake in the mind.
TEA TEMPLES OR LOOSE?
We do think it is a lovely idea to brew loose leaf pots of tea when you have the space and time to do so. However like all of our organic tea's we do offer this blend in tea temples that are made of a cellulose fibre that will break-down when disposed. The process of slowing down is all part of the rich ceremony that you can bring into your daily life, in its own way a mindful practise.
Actually now that we mention mindfulness, this is a wonderful tea to drink before meditating. It will certainly keep your internal organs stimulated and busy enough that if you sometimes struggle with sleepiness when meditating, this should keep that at bay.
We were recently invited by the founder of Bondi Wash, Belinda Everingham, to feature in their newsletter about Green Entrepreneurs that work or live out of Bondi.
Click here to learn a bit more about The Organic Tea Project co-founder Jonas Allen, and what inspires him creatively and organically.
We encourage you to check-out the range of completely natural Bondi Wash products. Belinda works incredibly hard researching the facts to create and supply the range of beautiful chemical-free products that feature the benefits of Australian native plants. They really work, they help you stay organic and avoid some pretty nasty chemicals and they smell and feel so good you will fall in love with them.
This month we participated in Sydney Design Festival, as part of an event called Good Natured presented by Super Local Studios.
The Organic Tea Project was one of five panellists asked to present and discuss our experience with Circular Design.
The other panellists were Jennifer Kwok who talked about the five elements of design and nature in the urban landscape.
A presentation on the App Plant Life Balance,
that encourages integrating plants
in everyday life.
Waverley Council spoke about local fauna and flora. Photographer Julia Champtaloup presented and discussed her Terra Botanica project and Valentina Zarew gave her first public talk about Simpatico, reflecting on creative practices and sustainability.
The idea of designing experiences from start to end applies to The Organic Tea Project. From plantation to pot, we have mapped out how our tea walks more lightly on the planet and critically, avoids chemicals that our mainstream tea drinkers ingest.
We started from a passion for tea and a growing awareness of the scale of pesticides, specifically high levels of fluoride and damaging farming practices, that affect the tea pickers as well as the soil from mass-market tea brand practices.
An example of how design has been central to our story is when we started with only loose leaf tea. We realized that tea bags were popular and we needed to solve that as a packaging option. What is presented as a paper tea bag actually has a polypropylene material that is both bad for the environment and our bodies. So we sourced and worked on developing a plant-based cellulose product that is fully biodegradable. It is a superior choice from a sustainability perspective.
Another example is our tea box packaging that is hand silk screened as an alternative to an offset machine. We purchased a letterpress machine and silkscreen drying racks a decade ago with a view to creating work. This unit now employs many locals from my childhood home, Auroville in India.
The local employees are our friends that we know and trust to maintain a beautiful artisan practice employing over 20 people. All our printing is done on unbleached recyclable papers and non-toxic water-based inks further supporting our sustainability beliefs.
The journey to less waste and circular design does not finish there. As we grow we have more challenges to be better, and we are extremely mindful of this in our business practices. For us to succeed, we need to continue to find our true customers that make their tea buying decisions based on quality tea as much as the ethics and practices that go into producing it.
We are not the only organic tea brand in the market, however, our decades' long relationship with single estate plantations in India, where we create safe and fair employment, makes us so much more than a marketing message.
The Organic Tea Project x Nimble Activewear
To Celebrate Earth Day on the 22nd of April, The Organic Tea Project will be collaborating with Nimble Activewear in their Bondi Store, as part of the Community Hub Initiative.
We will be in store from 10am to 2pm giving away samples to take home as well as an in store tasting. Come by and say hello
As part of the Event Nimble Activewear are offering a 15% discount on all products on their online store.
Use Code 'EARTH15'
OFFER VALID TO 24TH APRIL.
Hey Tea Lovers! We are partnering with Wanderlust Aust/NZ bringing our tea to the Wanderlust 108 event in Sydney this Saturday the 8th of April. Find us in the True North Cafe brewing up some of our finest organic teas. As well we will be giving away heaps of free samples!
Cant wait to see you there.
Get your tickets https://wanderlust.com/108-events/sydney/
When we want something sweet we reach for Alter Eco and their Organic, GMO free and Fair Trade Chocolate. We find a nice strong cup of English Breakfast works a treat, with this treat. To celebrate, we will be including a complimentary bar of chocolate with all overs over the Easter Long Weekend, Until April the 18th.
The Organic Tea Project x Sydney Tea Festival 2017
With over seventy passionate tea artisans and five thousand thirsty tea lovers, it was sure to be an amazing day for tea. This was our third year being part of this amazing event and once again it did not disappoint.
The Sydney Tea Festival is an annual event held in August at Carriageworks. Featuring a tea market where you can sample a wide range of teas from the most delicate white teas to an intensely spicy sticky masala chai that coats your entire pallet with its warm embrace (of course talking about our Sticky Chai). As well as Tea Workshops and Tea Talks, all designed to educate and inform you about tea culture, tradition, and history. You could say it is Sydney's biggest tea party.
(photo: Madeye Photography)
As you enter you receive a small festival cup (that you get to take home with you) that is used throughout the day to sample the wide variety of tea available. As you wonder from stall to stall sampling the varying teas you really get to see how many different varieties of tea there are. From bespoke herbal blends to more traditional well-known tea varietals, each taste opens up a new world. For example, you can taste two English breakfast blends that use the same tea plant (Assam for example), but due to craftsmanship and expertise of the blender that tastes completely different. This is why we love tea, it tells a story from the soil to plant to picking to fermentation to blending to packing and shipping, each step influencing the final cup.
(photo: Madeye Photography)
It was such a great day for tea! Thank you to everyone who came and said hello to us at The Organic Tea Project stall. We love sharing our passion for organic tea. It was amazing to get everyone's unique insight on each of our blends. We hope you had as much fun as we did.
The Team at The Organic Tea Project
The name "English Breakfast" was invented in the 1840's in New York to market Chinese congou tea to the American public.
The Organic Tea Project started small but we remain a company wholly dedicated to offering only the most premium and freshest organic blends.
From the beginning, we committed our efforts to the creation of the best tasting, cleanest and most wholesome organic English Breakfast blend. It’s a mainstay of the tea universe, so we had to get it right.
By fastidiously tasting all our favourite English Breakfast teas from around the world we determined the best balance to offer a most well-rounded blend of flavours.
Our journey took us to wherever the finest organic and fair trade teas in the world are grown. The absolute best? Look in Darjeeling, Assam and Nilgiri.
With the help of Master Tea Blender, Jonny, we determined that the peak English Breakfast blend is a combination of two key teas.
To achieve the multi-dimensional flavour of premium English Breakfast we start from a base of Assam grown leaves, renowned for its robust malty flavour. The second ingredient is high grown Nilgiri tea. Discerning drinkers will recognise its fine flavour liquors.
The combination makes for a sublime balance and you can see it as a rich blend of colour, delivering a tea that is both malty and crisp in taste.
When combined with a splash of milk you can expect a subtle yet energising kick that will set your future standard for English Breakfast from the very first sip.
It took us 28 attempts to find that ideal balanced combination of flavours. When we finally found our malty yet crisp blend it was like unlocking a magic formula and since then we have been dedicated to recreating the perfect breakfast tea after every new harvest through tasting, documenting and more tasting.
It was a long journey to find our breakfast blend and we truly hope you enjoy it as much as we do...