Top tea sup­pli­ers Ron­nefeldt and Jaf­fer­jee tell us about their plans for the com­ing year.

As tea be­gins to hit the same level of con­sumer aware­ness as cof­fee, with con­sumers car­ing more about ori­gin and qual­ity than ever be­fore, brands are hav­ing to ex­pand their hori­zons

Caterer Middle East - - Supplier News -

Jaf­fer­jee Broth­ers is a pre­mium tea and in­fu­sion ex­porter based in Colombo, Sri Lanka. The com­pany was founded in 1944 and ex­ports tea to over 30 coun­tries across the globe. It of­fers a wide range of so­lu­tions for the food ser­vice sec­tor through its flag­ship brands Jaf Tea and Te Re­val.

But nowa­days eth­i­cal con­sid­er­a­tions play a big­ger part in the com­pany’s de­ci­sion mak­ing process. All teas that Jaf­fer­jee Broth­ers make are packed in Sri Lanka to give max­i­mum value to the lo­cal com­mu­ni­ties.

It’s the same at Ger­man-based tea spe­cial­ists J.T. Ron­nefeldt KG, where owner Jan Holzapfel tells us they are tak­ing the is­sue very se­ri­ously.

He says: “We are in­ves­ti­gat­ing in sus­tain­abil­ity be­cause we see the de­mand of our clients world­wide. Plas­tic free prod­ucts be­come a ma­jor is­sue as the oceans are full with plas­tic. As one of the first smaller SMEs we cre­ated our first sus­tain­abil­ity re­port ac­cord­ing to the GRI in­ter­na­tional stan­dards. Be­sides, we are mem­ber of ETP Lon­don, one of the NGOs op­er­at­ing in the world­wide tea busi­ness. ETP takes care about the global stan­dards for a fairer, bet­ter, more sus­tain­able tea in­dus­try for tea work­ers, farm­ers and the en­vi­ron­ment, en­sur­ing a sus­tain­able fu­ture for the tea in­dus­try.”

There are also is­sues around cli­mate and po­lit­i­cal changes af­fect­ing the pro­duc­tion of tea in Dar­jeel­ing which means Ron­nefeldt has to en­sure it is pro­tect­ing the means of pro­duc­tion, so as not to risk be­ing un­able to fulf il the world­wide de­mand.

It’s a de­mand which has seen cus­tomers look­ing for a higher stan­dard of tea.

Jaf­fer­jee Broth­ers di­rec­tor Mu­fad­dal Jaf­fer­jee tells us that its prod­uct range in­cludes “ex­cep­tional sin­gle ori­gin teas pack­aged to meet the needs of our dis­cern­ing clien­tele. Our brand Te Re­val fo­cusses on the lux­ury food ser­vice

seg­ment as each prod­uct con­tains only all nat­u­ral in­gre­di­ents. While our Jaf Tea brand of­fers a very wide range of teas and in­fu­sions to cater to the pre­mium seg­ment of the mar­ket”.

For Ron­nefeldt, the ris­ing de­mand from “tea con­nois­seurs world­wide” means hav­ing to look fur­ther afield. Holzapfel says places like “Colom­bia, Africa, and New Zealand” are be­ing in­ves­ti­gated to en­sure top qual­ity can be en­sured.

He tells us that at the mo­ment Ron­nefeldt has its “TeaS­tar col­lec­tion with the ut­most qual­ity of lose leaf tea as well as our pre por­tioned so­lu­tions Tea-Caddy, LeafCup and Teave­lope sup­port ho­tels in de­liv­er­ing the high­est tea qual­i­ties to their cus­tomers. Guests ap­pre­ci­ate it.”

Ho­tels are also a key fo­cal point for Jaf­fer­jee Broth­ers and Jaf­fer­jee tells us they “have a wide range of prod­ucts for cafes and ho­tels. From in-room so­lu­tions to fine din­ing we have a com­plete range in­clud­ing the brew­ing ac­cou­trements, en­gag­ing menus and at­trac­tive tea walls. Our dis­trib­u­tors in the GCC can pro­vide the train­ing and sup­port needed to meet our cus­tomers’ needs”.

Look­ing to the fu­ture and as de­mand con­tin­ues to rise Jaf­fer­jee says his com­pany is look­ing to ex­pand fur­ther into North Amer­ica and Europe. Mean­while Holzapfel tells us one of the main trends to look out for in 2019 is “cus­tomised so­lu­tions with in­di­vid­ual pack­ag­ing for ho­tels” like Ron­nefeldt’s Mix & Match con­cept which al­lows ho­tels to cre­ate their own branded tea se­lec­tion.

Ron­nefeldt BergkraeuterRic­cardo Gi­raudi

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