Following the recent events of Remembrance day and Armistice Day and the in office celebration of having our Gurkha Tea Bags back in stock, we thought it was time to talk about where our Gurkha tea comes from and our connections to the Gurkha Regiment.[caption id="attachment_810" align="aligncenter" width="461"] Mrs Smith and the family[/caption]
The Kent Tea & Trading Company is a family tea company established in 1982. Three generations of the Smith family have been involved in the tea trade in the Indian regions of Assam, Darjeeling and Calcutta. Grandfather Robert Stammers and his wife Madeline Stammers went to India in the 1920s where Robert was a tea planter for over thirty years, ultimately managing the famous Behora Tea Estate in Assam.[caption id="attachment_820" align="aligncenter" width="503"] Enjoying a well-earned rest![/caption]
Their daughter Janet married Mr Malcolm Smith and together, they continued working in the tea trade managing one of India’s largest tea plantation companies based in Calcutta. On returning to England, the baton was passed on to son Richard who together with mother Janet, continue the fine tradition of supplying clients with the finest teas and coffees.
Malcolm Smith served in the 4th and 10th Royal Gurkha Rifles and was a member of the British Nepal Chamber of Commerce when Malcolm passed away, it was his Son Richard who replaced his position.
This is where Richard met Gopal Giri; a former Gurkha Solider who sought advice regarding the selling and market of tea, to which Richard said yes, in return for training in jungle warfare. Nowadays, you would not want to meet Richard down a dark alleyway!
This partnership resulted in the 'Gurkha Tea' brand. Which uses Single-Estate teas from their own estate in Shree Antu and neighbouring tea producers, dealing directly with farmers. Thus, reducing a carbon footprint, and allowing farmers to receive a fair deal, you can view our Gurkha Tea in the Nepal Tea section on our website.[caption id="attachment_808" align="aligncenter" width="471"] Shree Antu[/caption]
Gurkha Tea is involved in improving the local illiteracy rate by donating equipment and books to the local Shree Antu school, living standards and regeneration by working with charities. As well as supporting many Gurkha foundations showing support to fellow soldiers.
Nepalese tea itself is known for its unique taste, it holds huge similarities to Darjeeling tea which is no surprise as Shree Antu it is only 50km away from Darjeeling and shares the same weather conditions.
However, tea connoisseurs consider Nepalese tea to be of a better quality in aroma, taste and colour. With many Nepalese teas masquerading as Darjeeling tea due to Darjeeling's lack of quantity.
Although, Nepal does have the advantage of the fresher, younger leaf due to Nepalese tea only becoming popular within the market in the 1970's.[caption id="attachment_806" align="aligncenter" width="514"] Tea Fields of Shree Antu[/caption]