Setting the standard in sustainability

Rwanda, March 2013: Certified tea packed for shipment at the Kitabi tea factory.Photograph by Mike Goldwater

Bettys & Taylors has been named a leader in sustainability by the Rainforest Alliance, in recognition of our long-term commitment to our global supply chain.

The prestigious Sustainable Standard-Setter Awards are presented annually to companies and individuals who demonstrate a deep commitment to meeting rigorous sustainability standards, protecting the environment, and supporting the communities they work with.

In awarding the accolade, the Rainforest Alliance said: “Bettys & Taylors has become a role model in the industry, known for partnering with farmers and rewarding those who are doing right by their land and employees by offering these producers a price premium for their crops.”

The award acknowledged our work in Rwanda to improve livelihoods by providing training on sustainable agricultural practices to more than 10,000 tea smallholders. The three year project, supported by a UK government FRICH (Food Retail Industry Challenge) grant, improved water conservation, waste management and working conditions, as well as increasing in tea yields and income.

A further FRICH grant supported 8,000 Rwandan smallholder coffee farmers, resulting in Rwanda’s first Rainforest Alliance Certified coffee, and delivered training programmes to 6,000 coffee farmers in Uganda to prepare for the impacts of climate change.

President of the Rainforest Alliance, Tensie Whelan, said: “It’s one thing to declare ambitious sustainability goals, but it’s another to implement them successfully and create tangible results. That requires transparency, collaboration and innovation across sectors.”