Organic/Fair Trade

"What is so great about organic? And how can you be sure it is?"

We wanted to make shopping for organic tea as simple and reliable as possible. That is why we only sell Certifed Organic teas and hebal tisanes. Indeed, that is why we ourselves are USDA Certifed as an Organic producer.

While it is certainly true that many teas are produced naturally in an organic fashion and have been for hundreds of years, there are many farms that still use highly toxic pesticides (DDT being one of them). We wanted the assurance and a dedicated papertrail all the way back to the farm indicating the true organic status of all of our products.

We know our customers care about purity, quality, and the health of the workers and environment as well as the gorgeous quality of the leaf and flavor of the tea that is produced. And so do we.

Lot numbers of our teas are avalable at all times indicating where and when the tea was produced.

Zhi Tea also provides IMO - Organic Certified Teas. Why? Because some of our best teas are from tiny tea farms that cannot afford USDA certification, but are part of the European Certification process.

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"What is Fair Trade? Who is TransFair?"

Most of our teas we purchase at a Fair Trade premium, as our collective conscious dictates it. The only teas that are not Fair Trade Certified are those which it is not possible to do so yet. We feel it is just the right thing to do to pay a fraction above the cost of the tea directly to the workers and their families. The funds from this program indeed are put into an account with the co-operatives and the people themselves decide what to do with the money. It really does transform their lives for the positive. Schools, sewing machines, fresh water - the things we take for granted are now a possibility for many of these people who produce these gorgeous teas for us!

TransFair USA, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, is one of twenty members of Fairtrade Labelling Organizations International (FLO), and the only third-party certifier of Fair Trade products in the United States. They audit transactions between US companies offering Fair Trade Certified™ products (like us!) and the international suppliers from whom they source, in order to guarantee that the farmers and farm workers behind Fair Trade Certified goods were paid a fair, above-market price. In addition, annual inspections conducted by FLO ensure that strict socioeconomic development criteria are being met using increased Fair Trade revenues.

Fairtrade/Transfair Information

More of each dollar spent on any of these products goes back to the farmers and farm workers who produce them. The US Fair Trade market has thus empowered farmers and farm workers around the world to determine their most pressing local economic development needs for themselves, and reinvest in their products, cooperatives, and communities in appropriate and sustainable ways.

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"How can I find out more about Fair Trade/TransFair?"

We encourage you to peruse their website to see just what it is these amazing folks do.

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"What can you tell me about USDA Organics?"

The USDA has a bunch of information on Organic Certification here:

USDA Organic Program

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"Do you sell tea that is not Certified or Certified by another agency?"

Our tea will always be Organic...that's a promise. Yes, we provide small farms teas that have been chemical tested and certified by other european and asian certifying bodies such as the IMO.

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