Livelihoods and Land

More Sustainable farming

Today, we’re losing the diverse mix of plants and species that enable life on our planet to thrive. It’s partly due to human activities like farming and industry, which can lead to the loss of forests and natural habitats.

This is a big problem for farmers, including tea farmers, who depend on healthy natural systems for good soil and water. If these things aren’t in place, they often have to rely on costly fertilisers and pesticides to continue farming.

That’s why, as part of our Sourced with Care programme, we are helping farmers gain access to the skills, tools and knowledge to farm in harmony with nature, so they can continue to make a living from tea and herb farming while taking care of the environment.

Working with Mercy Corps, we are improving local biodiversity in Alta Verapaz, Guatemala, by helping cardamom farmers establish agroforestry nurseries, with a focus on organic production.

Introducing agroforestry crops, such as cinnamon, cloves and black pepper, helps communities adapt to climate change by creating a more ecologically diverse output from the land, as well as boosting income through diversification.

Planting a variety of crops means healthier soil and higher yields – not to mention creating vital homes for wildlife.

"We are interested in the agroforestry system because it would increase our income and improve production on our cardamom plantations. This is a great opportunity for the community."
Claudia Caal,
President of the Community Savings Group

What we aim to achieve

We plan to help 25,000 smallholders learn how to build their climate resilience and improve their livelihoods through more sustainable, nature-friendly practices including:

  • Planting shade trees and diversifying varieties with drought and frost-resistant ones.
  • Increasing the organic material and nutrient content of soil with compost, manure and fertiliser.
  • Efficient management of water storage and harvesting.
  • Sustainable management of forests and riverbank protection.
  • Introduction of agroforestry crops to diversify incomes.
  • Improved management of pests and diseases.
  • Introduction of agroforestry crops such as cloves and black pepper.

We are about to embark on our very first exciting pilot to develop nature-based solutions in tea production that could both reduce emission and support farmers with improved livelihoods.

We have partnered with Solidaridad in Argentina, where we will initially work with 100 farmers to implement more regenerative agriculture practices including reducing the use of synthetic fertilisers, planting trees, and preserving and enriching the natural ecosystem within the farm.