Tambuzi | Our Fairtrade Kenyan Flower Farm
Did you know we can supply you with scented garden roses all year round? Well, thanks to our award winning, Fairtrade farm, Tambuzi, we can! The rose paddock is nestled into the foothills of Mount Kenya, which provides the perfect growing conditions for our scented roses.
Today, Tambuzi has 25 hectares of roses and summer flowers at its original Burguret site, and complimentary production of sustainable forestry, bee keeping, and livestock. Recently Tambuzi has expanded to two more farms in Timau to meet the demand for its high quality flowers. Tambuzi is a company driven not just for profit but also with a goal of having beneficial social impact in all its activities. The strap line ‘stop and smell the roses’ sends a simple message – be always mindful of what you do and enjoy it.
The company considers the welfare of its employees and the neighbouring communities to be part of its strength. Tambuzi’s good practices ensure that we mitigate potential negative impacts on the environment. Like farms around the world, this is the place that Tim, Maggie and their children call home, and, as such, is so much more than just a business.
Eco Friendly & Community Based
The farm works closely with local communities Tambuzi’s good practices ensure that any potential negative impacts on the environment are minimised. There is no need for any artificial heat or light and over 60% of the daytime use of power for water pumps and coldstores is from the farms own solar plant – this actually has a great impact on the carbon footprint and massively reduces diesel use.
What about water, we hear you cry?
Tambuzi use a dam to water the roses and the flowers. The dam fills during rain season from a river via furrows, which only flow when the river floods. This method means that the river (which flows from the slops of Mount Kenya through the farm and to the communities below) is never pumped from, ensuring the community’s water supply is never affected. The farm receives 50% of the annual water needed to irrigate by capturing and storing water that lands on the greenhouses. In addition to these water collection methods, the packing shed uses water collected from bore holes. To ensure that the roses are irrigated efficiently, using as little water as possible, water is fed to them in drips.
The three Tambuzi farms are located 180km north of Nairobi, within Nyeri, Laikipia and Meru Counties. The semi-arid region includes a 10,000km² wilderness haven, supporting large numbers of wildlife – many endangered. Where the southern boundary of Laikipia meets the western foothills of Mount Kenya, productive rain-fed farming areas support a high population of people. Tambuzi is the only large scale flower farm in an area which is dominated by small scale farms, each between two and six acres, mostly growing maize, intercropped with beans and potatoes.
Tambuzi is located on the Equator at an altitude of 1,900 meters above sea level. The area receives ten hours of sunshine a day and 800 mm of rainfall a year. These perfect growing conditions, combined with a committed and expert team, make Tambuzi accomplished leaders in the field of scented rose production in Kenya.
The Tambuzi Team
With employment being one of Kenya’s largest opportunities to combat poverty, Tambuzi is committed to improving lives by creating jobs. We are passionate about the idea of ‘Trade not Aid’ for Africa. Where possible we employ rather than mechanise.
Tambuzi is the largest employer within a 20-mile radius and employs over 500 people on a full time basis, 80% of whom live close enough to walk to the farm. When recruiting, Tambuzi gives priority to members of the local community, especially those that are permanent residents of the area. On average, each employee has between six and ten dependents, so employment created by Tambuzi directly benefits over 3,000 people.
Tambuzi believes that employment is about dignity and respect, and well thought-out policies have been established to support employees at all levels. With written contracts in place, employees have all-important job security. Our Health and Safety, Equality and Welfare Committees and open-door policy ensure that every member of the team has a voice. We have a low turnover of staff, with over half the staff having worked here for more than five years. We promote career development and conduct annual performance appraisals of all our employees.