Bo’s Coffee celebrates another milestone in its partnership with Tsaa Laya, a social enterprise and premier Philippine Tea farming community. Spanning a decade, this fruitful partnership has seen the community grow from a mere 7 farmer-nanays to a team of 20 tea makers and 25 herbal farmers today. In this place where many people have been relocated from various cities and other parts of the country due to natural disasters, mothers and women have found a home and community that supports them with a sustainable livelihood.
From Left: Jamir Ocampo (CEO and Founder of Tsaa Laya),Steve Benitez (CEO and Founder or Bo's Coffee), Sam (IKAC Farmer), and Rachel Fallarme (COO of Bo's Coffee). Taken last June 23, 2022 during Tsaa Laya immersion.
Recently, Bo’s Coffee team led by Steve Benitez, founder and CEO, had the opportunity to visit the new Tsaa Laya Tea Village in Calauan, Laguna, where they were toured around the farm and production facility by Jamir Ocampo, founder of Tsaa Laya and his team of farmer-nanays.
Jamir and the farm-nanays shared the process on tea farming and tea making, introduced new tea blends and exchanged stories on how the partnership has uplifted the lives of everyone in the community, while at the same time provided a platform to showcase Philippine herbal traditions into a flavorful and exquisite tea experience through Bo’s Coffee.
One of the pioneer tea makers, Mary Anne, who moved from Antique to Marikina and eventually relocated to Calauan because of Typhoon Ondoy, says "Mahirap po ang naging buhay namin dito (nung na relocate sa Calauan) kasi walang kabuhayan. Pero nung nakabangon bangon kami dahil dito (sa Tsaa Laya tea village), nagkaroon naman ng Pandemic. Pero bumabangon ulit kami.”
"At nagpapasalamat din kami dahil sa bawat bangon namin nandun kayo (Bo’s Coffee),” added Ate Beth, one of the farmer-nanays assigned in the production area.
Jamir Ocampo, founder of Tsaa Laya, recalls that the first tanglad tea the farm-nanays harvested and dried were delivered to Bo’s Coffee.
“It was very symbolic for us because the very first break was given to us by an established Filipino Coffee chain who have trusted our potential, from a small stall that they've seen in a bazaar way back 2012. Thank you for a decade of partnership, Bo's Coffee is literally there since day one,” says Ocampo.
Always at the helm of supporting Filipino social enterprises, Bo’s Coffee’s partnership with Tsaa Laya, has been standing strong since the latter was founded in 2012.
" I'm happy that my team had a chance to witness this milestone and show what Bo's coffee is all about and why we do what we do. We continue to look for a community to support to share this platform with us and grow with us. Tulad ng sinasabi ko sa team ko, success is nothing if di natin kasama sa pag angat ang mga kasama natin,at naging kasama namin kayo doon sa pag angat na yun." says Mr. Steve Benitez, CEO and Founder of Bo's Coffee.
( From Left: IKAC Farmers with Mr. Steve Benitez)
Tsaa Laya partners with rural communities where the enterprise develops sustainable livelihood for Filipinos to produce local herbal flavors into exquisite tea blends. One of these communities is Inang Kalikasan Agricultural Cooperative that had farmers relocate to Calauan and the Urban Zoning policy in Manila. The group has been planting ornamental plants, herbs and even some vegetables, and exclusively provides the herbs for Tsaa Laya. Tsaa Laya has since expanded to develop more herbal tea communities in other parts of the Philippines.
"I really admire our social enterprise partners like Tsaa Laya. We saw them grow from a small community supplying only Bo’s Coffee to a social enterprise producing world-class Philippine herbal teas that can compete with the world’s best. I look forward to more milestones we can achieve together!” says Rachel B. Fallarme, COO at Bo’s Coffee, who came with the team to the tea village.
Bo's Coffee serves hot teas and Shaken Iced Teas made with Tsaa Laya premium herbal teas, and will soon introduce exclusive new products and tea blends in all of its stores nationwide.
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