With areas of land ranging from 0.04 hectares (0.04 acres) to 100 hectares (250 acres), smallholders grow tea and supply green tea leaf to our factories for processing into black tea.

Our factories have Fairtrade Processor & Exporter Accreditation, with green leaf sourced from smallholders who are registered as Fairtrade Labelling Organisation (FLO) producers. The 3,500 smallholders who supply green tea leaf to EPM are registered with Fairtrade under the Eastern Outgrowers Trust. This Trust is empowered to utilise the funds received from the Fairtrade Organisation for social upliftment within these rural farming areas. Projects funded through the Fairtrade premium range from tree planting to school accommodation and children’s nurseries.

Eastern Produce Malawi has a strong link with the Trust providing management advice and training. Eastern Produce Malawi also employs field officers to assist smallholders with agronomic guidance. We have comprehensive green leaf agreements with smallholders covering quality standards, the business relationship and food safety. Small holders are important to us in enabling our factories to operate an optimum efficiency and in helping to maintain good relations and stability with surrounding communities.