An Update from James…
It’s been a busy few months for us here at Clipper, but we like to be kept out of trouble! I spent much of the summer visiting tea estates across India and Sri Lanka, and it’s always lovely to return to the gardens I’ve seen develop over the years. It’s been incredible to witness the impact our Fairtrade contributions make to the people on the ground. We were proudly shown around the new community centre and livestock shed, both paid for with the Fairtrade premium, and making a big difference to the local community.
In India they like their tea a lot sweeter than how we brew it here in the UK, and it’s always fun to indulge my sweet tooth at the Estate Managers’ homes, each brewing their unique blend of tea, cinnamon and other spices; it’s never the quite same when I try to recreate it at home!
For those of you who are interested in how I became a Tea Guy here at Clipper, it started as a little casual work here right after I’d finished college, to pay for me to go travelling all over the world – something that was not as common back then as it is now. Once I got back, I decided to help pack the tea again to recoup my finances, but never left! I’ve tried my hand at pretty much every job in the business, before I settled in Purchasing. It really helps, having experience of so many different roles, because it I understand the whole process of buying, blending and producing tea – something I feel very lucky to know!
My proudest moment at Clipper was probably when we launched our Gold blend – it truly is the King of Teas! Everyone at Clipper was really excited about the blend, but we weren’t expecting to get emails through from other tea companies, telling us how much they love it! My other baby is Dandelion and Burdock, a blend I dreamed up while travelling through rural Poland to visit our nettle gardens a few years back, and is still selling well!
We do less travelling over the winter, so I’ll be spending the next few months helping to blend and source some new Clipper products. This really is the best part of the job – we’re given a brief and then left to our own devices! I’m really excited about these new blends, and can’t wait to share them with you!