Kenyan farmers switch to tea tree crops to meet The Body Shop demand

Kenyan farmers switch to tea tree crops to meet The Body Shop demand

Kenyan farmers in Laikipia County are switching from maize fields to tea tree plantations, a move that is providing a steady income and allowing them to make the most of the semi-arid conditions, according to a report published by the Thomson Reuters Foundation.

Farmers have been able to make the switch thanks to a project run by Earthoil, who sold the seedlings on credit to some 800 smallholders, and guarantees to buy the resulting harvest.

Earthoil then extracts the tea tree oil from the branches at its local distillery and exports it to The Body Shop. Earthoil currently supplies some 8 tonnes of tea tree oil to The Body Shop.

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