Who doesn’t like to start the day with a delicious cup of coffee or tea? As many as 63% of American adults drink coffee daily, and tea is the second-most widely consumed beverage worldwide after water. But many types of tea and coffee are treated with pesticides or grown by overworked and underpaid workers. Do you know how sustainable your morning brew is?
Whether you drink tea, coffee or yerba mate, your choice to purchase only sustainable brands can have a substantial environmental impact. Start your day with a tasty and sustainable beverage that you can feel good about drinking.
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Rishi Tea & Botanicals Matcha Super Green Herbal Tea
Approximately 95% of products by Rishi Tea & Botanicals are USDA Certified Organic. Its teas are available loose-leaf or in biodegradable sachet bags. Rishi Tea supports supply chain transparency and direct trade. Its buyers can walk in the fields to taste and verify where and how its organic teas are grown.
Rishi Tea Matcha Super Green Herbal Tea is a combination of vibrantly fresh matcha and deeply sweet sencha. The product is USDA Organic and non-GMO. We prefer the sachet tea bag in this product – it’s a little easier to deal with and the bags can be composted when you’re done. This super green herbal tea is a product of sustainable business practices and a great choice to give a fresh and healthy start to your day.
Yogi Echinacea Immune Support Tea
Yogi is a Certified B Corporation that creates teas “to support body and mind.” The company promotes quality, sustainability, and social responsibility by using organic and non-GMO ingredients and following sustainable manufacturing practices. It also supports its growers’ communities; the company’s tea gardens in Honduras and India are home to 1,200 and 2,000 residents, respectively.
Yogi Echinacea Immune Support Tea is a certified organic and non-GMO product that combines the flavor of lemongrass and peppermint with fennel and licorice for a sweet and refreshing herbal blend. It also has medicinal properties that support your immune system and respiratory health. The tea is caffeine-free, vegan, and gluten-free, with no artificial sweeteners or flavors.
Peet’s Coffee Espresso Capsules Nerissimo, Intensity 11
Peet’s sources high-quality coffee by systematically evaluating all coffee purchases based on sustainability standards. The company focuses on reducing its environmental impact throughout the production and delivery process, using environment-friendly manufacturing practices that reduce its energy footprint by 40%. Peet’s recycles 75% of its waste and has implemented high-efficiency irrigation to reduce water usage in its supply chain.
Peet’s Coffee Espresso Capsules Nerissimo is a pack of 10 delicious, bittersweet espresso capsules that give a refreshing start to your day. To reduce the environmental impact of the capsules, Peet’s offers a mail-back capsule recycling program. Just request a recycling kit from your local Peet’s Coffee shop or order one online.
Teatulia Black Tea Pyramid Bags
Teatulia Organic Teas promises accountability, purity, and transparency to its customers in its single-garden direct sustainable tea. The company uses sustainable farming practices that don’t harm the environment and deploys social practices that empower the farmers that grow its teas. Teatulia practices direct trade – tea leaves are plucked from the garden and sent to the consumers without a third party’s involvement.
Teatulia Organic Black Tea is a balanced black tea with a light cherry aroma and sweet finish. The tea is 100% organic, direct from Tetulia’s garden in Bangladesh. The compostable pyramid tea bags allow more space for the leaves to infuse so you get more flavor, and each bag can be brewed two or three times. You can get 14 different tea flavors in this 50-bag bulk package, so pick the one that suits your taste.
Bigelow Steep Café Organic Oolong Tea
The venerable Bigelow brand, familiar to most, is a leader in responsible sourcing of organic, Fair Trade, non-GMO teas. The company reduces its energy footprint by using renewable solar energy to support 100% of its energy requirements. And 100% of Bigelow’s boxes are recyclable; Bigelow composts more than 80 tons of packaging waste every year.
If you haven’t given Bigelow a try recently, we recommend Bigelow Steep Café Organic Oolong Tea. The tea is smooth with toasted nutty notes and a subtle smoky finish. This pack of 50 teabags is organic, kosher, and GMO-free to help you start your day with health, freshness, and a sustainable boost.
Numi Jasmine Green Tea
Numi provides Fair Trade-certified organic tea leaves harvested according to sustainable practices. Its growers follow environmentally friendly practices including water conservation, energy conservation, and planting trees to help offset the carbon produced during the production process. Numi uses compostable plant-based tea wrappers to reduce its reliance on petroleum-based packaging.
Numi Jasmine Green includes 18 bags of premium green tea scented with organic jasmine flowers. It’s Fair Trade certified and organic, allowing you to experience your love for herbal tea without environmental guilt.
Art of Tea Sampler
Los Angeles-based Art of Tea is well known for its commitment to sustainability and a wide range of delicious flavors. Its tea bags are plastic-free, we’ve been able to compost them in a vermiculture pile but not a standard compost bin, and the packaging recyclable. Founder Steve Schwartz studied Ayurvedic medicine, discovering the health benefits and sense of well being that a fine cuppa can deliver in the morning, at noon, or before bedtime.
The best place to start a journey into the Art of Tea is the 50-bag Assorted Sampler. Our favorites and black tea lovers are the Earl Grey Crème and organic Breakfast Tea. The mix of tea bags in the collection vary by season, but you can count on finding the morning standards, along with a delicate chamomile.
Arbor Teas Organic Ancient Green Tuo Cha Pu Era Tea
Arbor Teas employs organic and biodynamic farming practices. It sources certified organic tea and herbs that help lower the carbon footprint and promote sustainability. Arbor Teas also follows Fair Trade and sustainable transportation, facility, and packaging practices. The company’s packaging is made with renewable cellulose material and is backyard compostable.
Arbor Teas Organic Ancient Green Tuo Cha Pu Era Tea is a wonderful tasting tightly-compressed dark green organic tea produced using the traditional qing technique. Each individually wrapped block makes a medium-sized pot of tea, or you can break it apart for a single cup. This unique tea has a flavor and aroma reminiscent of dry malted grains, greens, and sweet plum and offers many potential health benefits.
Pukka Turmeric Glow Herbal Tea
A Certified B Corporation that works to source the best organic, practitioner-grade herbs, Pukka strives to positively impact the lives of its farmers and growers around the world. The company’s sustainable value chain involves natural and low-carbon farming and harvesting practices. All Pukka packaging uses Forest Stewardship Council-certified materials.
Several research studies worldwide have confirmed the medical benefits of turmeric. Pukka Turmeric Glow contains whole leaf green tea, along with organic turmeric, cardamom, and lemon fruit. All the ingredients used in this product are ethically sourced and 100% organically grown.
Guayaki Traditional Yerba Mate
Brewed from the naturally caffeinated leaves of a holly tree native to South America, yerba mate is growing in popularity in the United States. Guayaki’s yerba mate leaves are hand-harvested in Paraguay, Argentina, and Brazil. The company follows four sustainability pillars: taking responsibility for the product’s environmental footprint; celebrating communities and culture; partnering with values; and practicing conscious leadership.
Each pack of Guayaki Traditional Yerba Mate includes 75 bags of naturally caffeinated, nutrient-rich yerba mate leaves. The product is Compact by Design certified by Amazon, which guarantees that the product uses minimal packaging, reduces air pollution, and minimizes water use during manufacturing.
A Healthy, Tasty, and Eco-friendly Start to Your Day
Farming and growing practices that include inorganic materials and lack transparency can hurt the environment in many ways. By choosing from these brands that use certified organic ingredients and sustainable farming practices, you can start your day with tea or coffee that is healthy, delicious, and environmentally friendly.
- Looking for sustainable coffee? Read our Tips for Buying and Enjoying Sustainable Coffee
Editor’s Note: This article was originally published in April 2021 and updated in October 2023 with new selections.