In The Beginning
In May of 2015, my father and I had been invited to Morocco as one of the semi-finalists for the Innovation Prize for Africa. Many times during the trip I had expressed my profuse appreciation and joy at having the opportunity to use my array of skills to do something that would be immensely beneficial to the world. During one conversation I expressed, “this is what I want to do with my life. I want to help people and I want to make money doing it”.
Later that spring, my Dad asked me to meet him and a friend at a local restaurant for a business meeting. I had initially assumed that the meeting was in regards to my Dad’s project so I had no idea at the time that this meeting would change the course of my entire life.
Since the summer of 2015, Maisha Tea has been hard at work developing and blending our first 4 blends of Moringa Leaf Tea. When we started selling our tea at the Goldstream Farmers Market followed by the James Bay Farmers Market, we were making all of our tea by hand. That’s right, we were buying fresh ingredients, processing, dehydrating, blending and packaging them all at home! Do you have any idea how long it takes to individually fill 16 tea bags, label them, package them, and then label the packages? We sure do! Anyhow, as our business grew, our processes had to grow as well.
And It Was Good
At Maisha Tea, we exclusively use authentic, raw ingredients sourced from the most ethical, sustainable manufacturers, to make every cup exquisite. Our moringa leaf specialty teas are meticulously blended in order to maximize flavour, aroma and nutritional benefit. 100% of the ingredients used in our Maisha Tea blends are certified organic and imported from through an import structure that is equitably beneficial to farmer.
Our objective is to provide high quality, nutritious moringa-based products to consumers. Through our sister company, The Social Forestry Project, we also strive to provide opportunities for African subsistence farmers to access larger markets to sell moringa at a fair price.
We initially developed 4 flagship proprietary blends of moringa leaf herbal teas:
What is Moringa?
The moringa oleifera tree is one of the most versatile on the planet and known in many cultures around the world as the “miracle tree”. Moringa leaves have long been known to indigenous peoples for their nutritional and medicinal benefits, but only recently has this untapped “super-food” been harnessed into dried leaves and leaf powder to be used in nutritional supplements. Although native to India, the tree grows throughout tropical and sub-tropical regions of Asia, Africa and Latin America, where it’s commonly called “drumstick tree” (for its long, slender pods) and “horseradish tree” (for the taste of its roots).
Almost every part of the moringa tree is used in traditional cooking and medicine. The seed pods, or “drumsticks,” are simmered in soups and stews, and the mature seeds are roasted like nuts or pressed to make oil. The flowers are tossed in salads, fried for a snack and brewed as tea, while the fresh leaves are cooked like spinach in all manner of dishes, from curries to omelets. Moringa Oleifera can be an important source of many essential nutrients. Most parts of this plant are said to hold some medicinal properties even including the seeds, fruit pods, and flowers although the leaves are thought to be the main medicinal component.
Moringa leaves are exceptionally nutritious. When fresh, they are rich in vitamin C. When carefully dried, gram for gram Moringa leaves contain 24 times the iron of spinach, 16 times the calcium of milk, 9 times the vitamin A of carrots, many times the potassium of bananas, and every essential amino acid your body needs. The leaves are also recognized as having the highest known antioxidant potential of all plant parts. Although, moringa has been praised for its health benefits for thousands of years, scientists have only investigated a fraction of the many reputed health benefits.
At Maisha Tea, we pride ourselves in delivering the highest quality moringa leaf herbal teas to consumers without sacrificing trade ethics. We do not simply build trust by consistently delivering superior quality products, but we also build relationships. Our relationships between our suppliers, trading partners and consumers will never be sacrificed in order to increase profits. When our business grows, the Maisha Tea Family grows horizontally, not vertically. This means that Maisha Tea will expand in such a way that focuses on benefiting a larger number of people rather than having the same number of people reap larger and larger benefits. Maisha Tea is a choice that feels good on the inside and out.
Love from beautiful Victoria, BC,
~Maisha Tea | Moringa Leaf Blends