Trees are our heroes, our national treasures. At Bettys & Taylors, we are so passionate about trees that we even have our own wood at RHS Harlow Carr Garden. Home to over 1,000 native species, the family-fun Woodland Festival on May 28 will be a great way to celebrate and learn about British ‘hero trees’.
Here’s a little more about our ‘hero trees’ in our woodland.
Yorkshire Tea has been out and about with The Gruffalo this month, celebrating our new pledge to plant a million trees in the UK and Kenya over the next five years. The project - ‘Yorkshire Tree’ - is working with The Gruffalo and The Woodland Trust to inspire schools and families to care for and enjoy our natural world, while planting trees in practice.
Did you know that in many countries trees are an important part of the tea making process? The energy needed to dry the leaves that we enjoy in every cup often comes from wood fuel, and one of our challenges has been to try and help this wood to be sourced sustainably so that it does not damage indigenous forests in tea growing countries.
As well as supporting projects that help to address wood fuel needs for communities and tea farms (you can find out more here), we’ve also been helping to pioneer new ways to generate energy for the process. On a recent trip to one of our top Kenyan suppliers, Makomboki tea factory, John the factory manager was keen to tell us about the success of an initiative, part-funded by our Supplier Grant Scheme, to install the biomass dryer for their new briquette machine which uses waste biomass to generate energy for tea processing.
Each year, we invite the people who supply our Yorkshire Tea and Taylors Coffee to apply for our Taylors Grant Scheme.
This fund helps tea and coffee producers make changes and improvements to their farms and cooperatives. Our supplier comes up with the idea, and we each fund half the cost. This year our grants helped to support projects ranging from water projects in Kenya and Guatemala to a musical project in Brazil and cooking stoves in Kenya. There were also a good few tree-planting projects inlcuding the planting of 50,000 indigenous tree seedlings in Malawi.
While Bettys focuses its efforts on tree planting in our beautiful Yorkshire landscape, at Taylors we’ve been working on a project which, amongst other things, attempts to reduce the environmental impact of tea farming in Kenya.