Our Commitment

TEA ORIGINS:

At ZENTEA COLLECTIVE we work to establish direct relationships with local US based tea farmers in order to ensure ethical and sustainable production practices. By working directly with farmers, we can ensure that they share and uphold our values of respect for the environment, workers' rights, and high-quality standards. This direct relationship also allows us to have more control over the entire production process, from the growing and harvesting of the tea leaves to the processing and packaging of the final product.

OUR PACKAGING:

The bag that you will receive your tea in is reusable and meant to be reused. The cardboard box that you will receive your order in is 100% compostable. The problem with traditional single-use food service items is they are often unable to be recovered or recycled due to food contamination. This means the packaging and the organic food waste both end up in our general-waste bins. Compostable packaging allows a single collection of waste, which leads us to the added benefit – reducing the environmental impacts of organic materials in landfill. In Australia alone, the food industry generates 1,000,000 tonnes of organic waste – with most of it going to landfill.

Organic waste in landfill is starved of oxygen and when it breaks down it emits the greenhouse gas methane. Methane is 28 times more harmful for our atmosphere than carbon, and if the overall contribution of gases from landfill were to be considered as a country, it would rank third in the world behind China and the USA. Composting our food waste along with our compostable packaging has a massive positive impact and is a key strategy to combat climate change. In addition, composting is a process that sequesters carbon from the atmosphere and locks it in the soil.

Plant-based materials are not only compostable, they are renewable. Bagasse, for example, is a material made from sugarcane pulp – a byproduct of the sugarcane industry. Rather than being burnt, this material can be recovered and have a useful life in our food service industry before being recovered, composted, and returned to the soil to provide nutrients for – wait for it – more plants.

Compared to plant-based materials, fossil-fuel-based plastics are with us for a very, very long time. Whether they end up in landfill or our oceans, these toxic materials do not easily break down, and growing evidence of the presence of plastics throughout our ecosystems – including within our own bodies – is reason enough to give them a miss.

Ecosystems around the world are under extreme pressure, with overpopulation and pollution key causes. Surveys of biodiversity paint a very grim picture indeed, but composting is one way in which we can help restore the balance.

Compost is beneficial to soils, plant and animal life in many ways:

  • It enhances soil structure and quality which promotes plant growth and water retention. 
  • Composting sequesters carbon and promotes an abundance of beneficial micro-organisms which makes our soil fertile and productive. 
  • It reduces the reliance on chemical fertilisers, minimising the impact of contaminated water run-off in our rivers and marine environments.