Estate Grown Teas from East Africa

We consider our signature black teas to be truly special and unique in the tea world and we’d like to tell you why. Our black teas are all sourced exclusively from the finest tea estates across East Africa, from Rwanda through to the Great Rift Valley in Kenya; this is generally considered to be where the very best teas are to be found. This equatorial region’s altitude, high rainfall and rich volcanic soil provide the ideal conditions that are integral to growing tea of unparalleled flavour and taste.

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The Pfunda Tea Estate is widely regarded as Rwanda’s leading tea estate and is situated in the north-west province of the country, 4 hours drive from the capital Kigali, in an area known as the Congo-Nile Crest, above Lake Kivu and below the Nyiragongo Volcano.

“East Africa is one of the largest tea exporters in the world.”

Pfunda concentrates on producing the finest tea, focusing on quality not quantity. The very best tea bushes are carefully selected for the estate and the saplings from these are grown in the on-site nursery. When the nursery manager judges them to be ready they are taken out for planting.

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The geography and climate at Pfunda means it is uniquely placed to produce tea of unparalleled flavour and taste. This equatorial region’s altitude of 1460-4500 metres above sea level, high rainfall and volcanoes along the Congo-Nile Crest provide the ideal conditions and rich soil that are integral to growing outstanding tea.

“The year-round growing season ensures consistency in product quality.”

The tea bushes grow high above sea level, at a slower rate, where the temperature is relatively low, developing greater flavour before they are individually hand picked. The estate provides valuable jobs for people in the area and also runs a co-operative for over 2600 farmers.

Some interesting facts about East African tea:

  • East Africa is one of the largest tea exporters in the world even though it was only introduced to the continent little more than a century ago..
  • The tea is grown near the equator, where the year-round growing season ensures consistency in product quality.
  • Tea in Africa is planted in some of the most fertile soils in habitats that are rich in biodiversity and are ecologically stable.
  • Most African tea is grown at high altitudes, which are cooler and so less prone to problems with pests and plant diseases than lower altitudes.
  • High-grown teas are of higher quality than low-grown teas.
  • Many African tea varieties are high in antioxidants.
  • No pesticides are used, and good agricultural practices have led to higher productivity per acre than in many traditional tea-growing countries.
  • Because tea is a relative newcomer to the continent, many tea-growing areas have modern tea factories and use cost-effective and efficient tea manufacturing technologies.

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The magnificent East African landscape is our inspiration for the artwork that adorns the Birchall Black Tea packaging. It is the exact view across the Pfunda Tea Estate looking towards two landmark volcanoes in the Virunga National Park the larger, known locally as Nyiragongo, has the worlds largest lava lake at it’s summit.

All that is left now is to taste our deliciously strong breakfast tea bursting with flavour, recently winning the highest accolade at the 2015 Great Taste Awards. Birchall Great Rift Tea is a unique English Breakfast blend, sourced exclusively from estates across East Africa.

Buy our Birchall Great Rift Breakfast Blend teas

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Highest Quality

By not compromising at any stage we are confident in every single cup of Birchall tea.

Tea Selection

Our tea selection ensures that only the best leaves are used to make our blends.

The Growers

To have the best tasting teas requires the right kind of stewardship.