Her Money, Her Life: Women's Economic Justice in the Tanzania Tea Industry


Despite the odds, SAKARE Specialty Tea Factory stands out as a symbol of change, with women predominantly occupying key roles within its workforce.

In the hills of Bungu, where tea plantations stretch as far as the eye can see, sits the SAKARE Specialty Tea Factory—the first-ever specialty tea demo factory in Tanzania. This milestone marked the beginning of a remarkable journey aiming to bridge not just the gap of gender roles but also the technological and market divides that have long dominated the landscape for smallholder tea farmers in Bungu. SAKARE Specialty Tea Factory emerges as a beacon of change, and against the odds, it boasts a workforce where women play a predominant role.

At the production level, women like Hobokeza Moyo stand as exemplars of dedication and transformation. They turn their tea farm plots into organic havens, anticipating a remarkable 23% increase in income compared to conventional green leaf prices. Hobokeza’s optimism is infectious as she shares, Sauda Waziri, among the women at the plucking level, finds empowerment in her new role as an organic tea plucker. The twofold increase in income and the assurance of consistent employment become the pillars of support for these women, transforming them into the backbone of their households. Sauda reflects on her journey, contrasting her past earnings at Mohammed Enterprises Tanzania Limited (MeTL) and the current assurance she has with Sakare Speciality Tea Company (SSTC).

“Even though we are yet to sell to Sakare Specialty Tea Company, we expect to sell at a price of $0.18 per kg. Apart from that, we expect our plucking to double the rate, leading to a boost income"


The odyssey continues into the processing level, where women like Latifa Abdulrahman defy cultural norms to become processors at Sakare Speciality Tea Company. Their dedication to mastering the intricacies of specialty tea processing not only exposes them to technology but also ensures a stable income. Latifa’s story, a testament to breaking stereotypes, underlines the crucial role played by gender equality training in fostering support from her husband.

“In our culture, this work is for men, but I challenged myself to grow in this career with the support from my husband.” says Latifa

Her income, a blend of technology exposure and financial stability, transforms not just her life but sets a

Establishing the SAKARE Specialty Tea Factory in Bungu marks a transformative initiative to bridge gender roles, technological gaps, and market divides for smallholder tea farmers. The success story unfolds through the dedication of women at various levels, from organic farming to processing, showcasing increased income, economic independence, and a shift in traditional norms, facilitated by collaborative efforts from CARE Tanzania, the Government of Tanzania, and implementing partners.