Satemwa Tea Estate


Grower: Satemwa Tea Estate

Tea Maker: Satemwa Tea Estate, led by Alexander Catchart Kay

Location: Thyolo Town in the Shire Highlands of Thyolo District in Malawi, Africa

Elevation: 1150m (Approximately 3,775 ft)

Cultivation: Conventional (Pesticide-free, with herbicide use)

Signature Teas: Zomba Pearls and Bvumbwe Handmade Treasure

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The Region

Satemwa Tea Estate is a family owned tea and coffee estate in Thyolo District, tucked away in the Shire Highlands of Malawi. The nation of Malawi is small but rich in natural resources, with lush forests and a large lake that makes up a large percentage of its landmass. The equivalent of the spring harvest occurs from November to March, the rainy season.

Like in many other African countries, Malawi faces problems with deforestation and improper land management, along with questions of worker ethics. The cultivation of tea as a cash crop provides an economic boost, but responsible estates like Satemwa are needed to lead the industry in sustainable ways.

The Grower

Established in 1923, Satemwa’s own third generation tea maker, Alexander Kay has been crafting and cultivating their teas with love and passion for his artisanal tea. In the nearly 100 years that Satemwa has been cultivating tea plants, they have made it a priority to improve the standard of living for their employees and their families.

Satemwa Tea Estate are trailblazers in Malawi to ensure the health and improvement of their tea workers' lives. As part of Satemwa's social responsibility program, they are able to provide a number of welfare services, which are available to both the estate's staff and workers, and their families.

Satemwa has great community programs, such as The Satemwa Clinic, which provides professional medical services, a primary school for families, community policing programs, and even a competitive soccer team. They are happy to be in close interaction with nature and work closely with their staff in a CSR (Corporate and Social Responsibility) program to protect the nearby forest and wildlife. Satemwa also works with sustainable wood and stoves that conserve firewood to dry the tea and are developing different solar and energy saving initiatives for the processing of their teas.

From their unique terroir, Satemwa is able to produce some unique orthodox white, green, oolong, black and dark teas. Experimenting with different local cultivars and playing around with some traditional and new processing techniques, with trial and error and loads of tasting, they have produced great and unusual teas. The typical cultivars, the unique climate and the specialized processing techniques make these teas exceptional. They are also Fair Trade Certified, UTZ+ and Rain Forest Alliance Certified

Photos by Satemwa

Meet the Grower

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Satemwa Tea Estate

Region: Thyolo, Malawi, Africa