About our Teas

We are committed to providing the highest-quality, safest, most ethically-sourced, environmentally-friendly teas available. We partner with a direct international importer to ensure you’re getting only the best. Within 30 minutes, they can trace the supply chain of 2 grams of tea (1 tea bag) from tea estate to client.

Safety Standards

  • HACCP Certification: HACCP (Hazard Analysis Critical Control Points) is a program that was originally designed for NASA and the US Army Laboratories to provide safe food for space expeditions. It is now internationally recognized as the best system to ensure food safety and is endorsed by the Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO) and the World Health Organization (WHO).
  • GMP Program: Recognized worldwide for the management and control of food manufacture, a solidified GMP (Good Manufacturing Processes) program ensures effective policies and procedures for employee and facility hygiene.
  • C-TPAT Certification: The C-TPAT (Customs-Trade Partners Against Terrorism) program, introduced by the US government in 2001 is a voluntary supply chain security program led by U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP). Certification within the program ensures a food safe environment and strictly controls who may interact with our tea products and when they can do it.
  • NOP/CO/EU Organic Certification: In strict accordance with National Organic Program (NOP)/ Canadian Organic (CO)/EU guidelines, organic tea products never come in contact with non-organic teas or any other prohibited substances. NOP/CO/EU certification is extremely rigorous but with it, when the product states Organic, you know it’s organic!
  • Additional testing for contaminants, above and beyond USFDA (US Food and Drug Administration) or CFIA (Canadian Food Inspection Agency) standards.
  • Visits to supplier tea estates on an annual basis to ensure proper handling, hygiene, employee safety and more.

Ethical Standards

  • Ethical Tea Partnership: The ETP monitors and regulates social conditions on tea estates. The goal of the ETP is to provide consumers with a transparent understanding of where tea is grown and how it is manufactured. Everything from fair compensation to health coverage, housing, schooling and childcare is closely scrutinized.
  • Fair Trade: Fair Trade is an international movement that promotes increased standards of living for laborers in developing countries. The movement ensures that a fair percentage of profits for goods sold remains in the hands of the workers who created them. The organization also attempts to regulate environmental controls on industries in the developing world.
  • All Teas are sourced from estates with excellent track records of social welfare. Estates build homes, hospitals and schools to ensure workers and their families are well cared for. On some estates, the same families have lived and worked there for generations. In many cases, the standards of amenities provided exceed those of their respective governments. Estates are visited annually and audited by senior staff from our importer.

Environmental Standards

  • Rainforest Alliance: The organization works to conserve biodiversity and ensure sustainable livelihoods by transforming land-use practices, business practices and consumer behavior. It covers things like ecosystem and water conservation, wildlife conservation, integrated crop management, soil management and waste management.
  • Due to the mountainous terrain and high altitude of the world’s leading growing regions, such as Darjeeling, Sri Lanka or Kenya, luxury teas must be hand-plucked. This means that for most of the world’s luxury teas, and virtually all of Metropolitan’s products, the harvesting process consumes very little fossil fuel and releases virtually no CO2.
  • As a rule, tea plantations are net absorbers of CO2. Most estates use renewable timber, refuse wood and root stock from exhausted tea bushes as a fuel source as often as possible. Not only are these fuel sources renewable and less costly than fossil fuels, they also emit fewer emissions.
  • Certain highly elevated tea districts, such as Darjeeling or the Kenyan highlands, can support tea without pesticides since pests that typically attack tea cannot survive at the lofty altitudes. In cases where pesticides are used, Metropolitan Tea takes great care to ensure all growers meet and exceed European Union or Japanese Minimum Residue Levels, the most stringent in the industry.
  • Our importer is committed to environmental preservation, as one of the world’s first completely carbon negative tea companies. Their facility is solar-powered and creates 4 times as much energy as it uses. They’ve planted a 15,000 tree forest (Want to see the farm? – Go to Google Earth, type in ‘159 Centre Diagonal Road, South Bruce Peninsula, Ontario’.), preserved 80 acres of wetlands and 80 acres of mature forests!