Once upon a time in a cafe there on the table was a 3 dimensional marketing leaflet describing idyllic times when tea was refined and those that drank it sat on large decorative chairs with a comfort only fit for a regal leader. The story promotes the wondrous tale of a couple, Nick and Louise, who through their own efforts and sadness at the way tea has been treated in recent times have developed a small little company to reinvigorate the nation towards the love for tea again. Ahhhh. Rusty Bullethole is no mug (!) and he decided to do a bit of investigative journalism into this absurdi-tea.
So. Teapigs. Sounds jizzmatic doesn’t it? Perfect. Ideal. Just what us Brits want to hear. “Yes dammit Mrs Miggins the tea has taken a rogering and we’re here to apply the Anusol.” To me it sounded too good to be true. Basically it had more front than a banker on a yacht lighting his cigar with your former tax-pounds.
So small business eh? Run by Nick and Louise who ‘met while working for a really big tea company’. So who was this tea company and how did the dynamic duo deliver? The company of course was Tetley (band Tetley and Teapigs into google and off you go). Tetley fronted the cash for this little venture of Nick and Lousie (I wonder if they even exist?) and helped it to lose hundreds of thousands of pound through its first years….. the sweet tale just keeps those tears rolling doesn’t it?
It is the mark of the world with larger companies pulling the wool over your eyes and making you look a tit when you are conned into the belief that you are putting your hard earned dosh into the pocket of a couple of honest working class geezers, guv. I am not pancake expert but I know a tosser when I see one.
Lets look a little deeper…. Tetley and Teapigs are owned by Tata Global Beverage who are in turn part of the Tata Group – that well known small global empire company. Is it still feeling family run now? Still feel like it is all being produced from a little cottage in Cotswoldshire by a couple dressed in rags trying to make lfe better for us all at their own expense?
So, Tata – they are ethically sound then? Oh yes of course, oh I mean no, they are a bunch of tossers – they offered to bail out Union Carbide over the Bhopal disaster that killed thousands. The protesters killed at Kalinganagar was ‘unfortunate’ according to Tata as they continued with plans to build an environment raping steel plant in India. Oh and among many other things supplying hardware to aid the anti-democratic and oppressive Burman Junta keep on with its human rights atrocities.
Back to Teapigs then. Owned (100% shareholding) by the 50th most valuable brand in the world (Tata). What is their mission… for people to “drink real tea” as opposed to “the slop that is crushed into dust and crammed into the nations teabag”. So tree-hugging Teapigs owners Nick and Louise who often sit at home reveling in the awesome smell of their own farts are encouraging people to “name and shame” hostelries that dare to sell you a crap cuppa. What crap cuppa is that then? The floor sweepings known as Tetley?
On a personal level I would love to meet Nick and Louise, mostly in a dark back alley with a kettle full of boiling water. But this is just another step in a world full of smoke and mirrors to make you think you might be doing something useful to society. Like what I hear you say? Well…
Innocent smoothies….. sold a huge stake to that well known cuddly eco-firm Coca-Cola.
Pret selling out to Maccy D’s….
Not that I liked either as I thought they were just a vehicle for shameless globalization (something they were supposed to be against) at the expense of their initial ethics.