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Tea Rebellion Product Review by Fork and Veg

Tea Rebellion – Product Review (Guest blog)

Tea Rebellion is a Canadian brand working directly with local tea farmers and masters, providing us with quality tea while impacting the workers and their communities in a positive way.

Most consumers (including me!) aren’t aware of the working and living conditions throughout the tea industry. Picking tea leaves for expensive tea blends, is a very long and daunting process. Sadly, despite the long hours and hard work in the tea gardens, the workers hardly make enough money to live.   If you want to learn more about the tea trade, watch this free documentary on YouTube.

The Dark Side of the Tea Trade:



If you want to know where your tea is coming from and how your money is being used to benefit tea farming communities, then Tea Rebellion is the brand for you!

MOVE OVER, David’s Tea! There’s a new tea company in town, providing customers with quality leaves, at an affordable price while directly benefiting the tea farmers. Win, win, win!

Enjoying a cup of black tea on a rainy Sunday morning
Enjoying a cup of black tea on a rainy Sunday morning

Tea Rebellion was founded by Annabel Kalmar in 2017. Annabel studied the coffee agriculture business by directly working in the fields of El Salvador and the Dominican Republic where she learned about the culture and industry by interviewing local farmers.  During this time, she had a revelation, why don’t TEA drinkers know where their tea comes from?  This is when Annabel decided to shake up the tea industry and rebel against how tea is traditionally traded, marketed and consumed.

Annabel was kind enough to send me 6 different teas to try:

Green Tea:
Genmaicha
Kukicha
Ganesh Green

Black Tea:
Kumari Gold
Kanchanjangha Noir
Smallholder Black

A wonderful variety of green and black tea from Tea Rebellion
A wonderful variety of green and black tea from Tea Rebellion

Each tea comes with a photo and a detailed story highlighting the workers who plant and harvest the tea leaves. Tea Rebellion provides consumers with access to interactive webinars. During the webinar sessions, the farmers are able to share stories and discuss issues within the tea business. This interaction builds a bridge between the tea lover and the tea farmer, which provides a connection that we never had before.

Steeping some Kanchanjangha Noir
Steeping some Kanchanjangha Noir

Kanchanjangha Noir

The first tea I decided to try was Kanchanjangha Noir, a black tea from the hilly region of Panchthar in Nepal. This tea is a premium black tea with a vibrant reddish brown colour.  I love a rich black tea in the mornings when I don’t feel like having a coffee.  Thanks to the higher caffeine levels, this type of tea gives me the energy I need to make it through the day.

Kanchanjangh Noir Black Tea
Kanchanjangh Noir Black Tea

The description for this tea is fruity/flowery, caramel, raisins and dark chocolate.  This tea is rich in flavour without being overpowering. Perhaps I didn’t steep my tea long enough (although I believe I timed it correctly), but I almost wish the flavours were a little stronger.  But overall a yummy tea, that is perfect for sipping on throughout the morning.

For 80 grams of Kanchanjangha Noir will cost $16.00 CAD, which I don’t think is bad for a premium loose leaf tea.  On the Kanchanjangha packaging, a profile of one of the oldest employees at this Nepal tea garden.  Meet Ratna Rai.  Ratna helped build the factory and later ran the fire oven for the drying machine.   I LOVE that a profile of the tea farmers and workers is provided on the Tea Rebellion packaging.  Learning about the workers and putting a face to the tea, makes me appreciate the tea even more.  Thank you Ratna!

Kukicha

The next tea I tried, was the green tea, Kukicha – this tea is grown in a remote tea garden up in the mountains of Fujieda. Kukicha is a bright green colour and has a strong grassy aroma.

Kukicha Green Tea
Kukicha Green Tea

The tea stems range in beautiful shades of green and I must say, I enjoyed this green tea the most.  It’s a classic green tea, with a clean and vegetal flavour, perfect for enjoying throughout the day. It will cost you $23 for 80 grams of this rich green tea. At $23 for 80g, this tea is a little pricey, but I still wouldn’t classify it as ‘expensive’

(the most expensive tea I ever purchased was $80 for 100g of tea! $80 for a tea is just WAY too expensive in my opinion).

On the package, we get to meet Toshiaki Kinezuka,  a master at organic tea farming, with years of farming experience under his belt. I love that we get to see a photo of Toshiaki, in the tea gardens.  You rock Toshiaki!

Final Thoughts

Overall I really enjoyed the teas that I tried from Tea Rebellion, but the thing I loved most about this company, is how they take the initiative to connect the consumer with the local farmer. Tea Rebellion also has a membership program where you can join the Tea Lovers Club, for only $39.00 (every three months)! As a tea lover, this is definitely a subscription box I want to try! To find out more about Tea Rebellion and to order their tea, check out the Tea Rebellion website.

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Thank you Stef from Fork and Veg for reviewing our teas.

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