Issue 21 - July 2013

News from Rooibos Ltd - read all about:

In this issue of Rooibos Ltd’s newsletter: Read about Rooibos Ltd’s new quality and sustainability logo, and about Rooibos farmer Willie Nel’s sustainable production practices. Also see what Rooibos Ltd and its representatives are doing to create awareness of Rooibos around the world. We give feedback on the Cederberg Arts Festival, expos, research findings, community initiatives and happenings at our head office. Last but not least, we invite you to try out six recipes with Rooibos and offer tips on how to use Rooibos as an ingredient in your cooking. Sit back with a cup of Rooibos and enjoy the read!

  • News
    Rooibos Ltd confirms quality with additional logo
    Get rotation right, says leading Rooibos Ltd producer Willie Nel
    SA Journalists get to experience impact of UTZ Rooibos
    Joekels prepares to open up tea market in Africa
    Freshpak Rooibos flights new TV commercial
    Rooibos Ltd report back: tea expo, golf sponsorship and training
    Taiwan market gets to know benefits of Rooibos
    Magazine PR campaign drives Rooibos sales during hot Japanese summer
    Typhoo Tea wins Green Supplier of the Year Award
    Celebrity Apprentice team serves Rooibos to impress
    Donating Rooibos to Food Bank in Holland
    Children from Solomon's Haven visit Rooibos Ltd
    Singapore Airlines serves Rooibos
    Rooibos a healthy option for tots, tweens and teens
    Rooibee Red Tea honoured at North American Tea Championship
  • Upcoming Events
    Get ready for Freshpak Fitness Festival, Clanwilliam, 5 October 2013
  • Community Engagement
    Rooibos & Cederberg Arts Festival: teaming up to grow local talent
    Clan F/C plays soccer in Rooibos-branded clothing
    Rooibos Ltd sponsors Op die Berg Rugby Club shirts
  • Personnel
    New corporate wear for professional look at Rooibos Ltd
    Rooibos Ltd recognises loyalty with Long Service Awards
  • Recipes
    Rooibos ice cream in the Serengeti
    Make Rooibos ice cream from award-winning A touch of Rooibos
    Recreate Bushman's Kloof recipes with Rooibos
  • New Products
    Rooibos and vodka in RedBushKa
    Nestea Red Tea launched in USA
    Rooibos in new product innovations
  • Health & Research
    Rooibos versus cancer and heart disease
    Rooibos can protect and support the liver
  • Tips - Rooibos Q&A
    How to use Rooibos in everyday cooking

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Rooibos Ltd confirms quality with additional logo

The new red and white Rooibos Ltd Quality Guaranteed logo on Rooibos packaging conveys a message of quality and sustainability. For consumers, this translates into peace of mind that comes from knowing that the Rooibos they are buying has been produced in an environmentally, socially and economically sustainable manner. It also means that they can trace the product back to the farm from which that particular batch of Rooibos came. Read more.

Get rotation right, says leading Rooibos Ltd producer Willie Nel

In this Farmer’s Weekly article, Willie Nel, recipient of Rooibos Limited’s Producer of the Year Award, says sustainable Rooibos production depends on a rotation cycle that will ensure good quality yields, season after season. Read more.

SA journalists get to experience impact of UTZ Rooibos

In March 2013, UTZ organised a trip for South African journalists to UTZ-certified Rooibos farms for them to experience first-hand the benefits of the UTZ standard for farmers, workers and their families, and possibly to publish their experiences in the media. By doing so, these journalists may help broaden the market for UTZ-certified farms and improve the inclusion of Rooibos farmers in regional certification projects. Based in Amsterdam, The Netherlands, UTZ certifies coffee, cocoa and tea produced in a sustainable way. Read more.

Joekels prepares to open up tea market in Africa

KwaZulu-Natal tea blending and packing company Joekels plans to enter markets outside of South Africa as the demand for tea grows. Joekels, which packs and blends 95% of the private label Rooibos and black tea for retailers such as Shoprite, Spar and Pick n Pay, has installed machinery worth R30 million to double its capacity. This will allow the company to produce up to 3 billion teabags a year aimed for African markets. Read more.

Freshpak Rooibos flights new TV commercial

The new Freshpak Rooibos TV commercial is a high-energy production featuring “Mam’ Feel So Good”. The advertisement was produced by M & C Saatchi Abel and Ola! Films. Watch TV commercial here.


Rooibos Ltd report back: tea expo, golf sponsorship and training

Rooibos Ltd exhibits at World Tea Expo in Las Vegas

Rooibos Ltd hosted a successful stand at the World Tea Expo which took place in Las Vegas from 7 to 9 June 2013. According to Rooibos Ltd’s CEO, Martin Bergh, the expo, held at Las Vegas Convention Center, was well attended. In particular, visitors showed a keen interest in Rooibos Ltd’s extracts. Over 30 of Rooibos Ltd’s customers also exhibited at the show.

Rooibos Ltd sponsors 20th golf championship for women, Hermanus

From 3 to 5 May this year, 288 women golfers from across the Western Cape teed up for the 20th Interclub Teams Golf Championship at Hermanus Golf Club. A total of 144 teams representing 24 golf clubs signed up for the 54-hole foursomes tournament. Rooibos Ltd was once again one of the main sponsors of this major event. Read more.

Rooibos Ltd hosts information sessions for Rooibos farmers

Soil health, quality, stakeholders and sustainability – these were among the issues that Rooibos Ltd discussed with producers during six information sessions.

Read more.

Caption: Attending the training session were (from left) Naudé Smith (researcher), Gerrit du Plessis (Rooibos Limited director), Debbie du Preez (Producer Liaison Officer at Rooibos Limited), Callie Smith (Rooibos Limited director), Johan Basson (Training Coordinator at Rooibos Limited) and Johan Brand (Technical Manager at Rooibos Limited).

Taiwan market gets to know benefits of Rooibos

Rooibos Ltd’s public relations company in Taiwan recently used two events – Africa Day and the Taiwan Nutrition Society’s Exhibition – to create awareness of the benefits of South African Rooibos. Read more.


Magazine PR campaign drives Rooibos sales during hot Japanese summer

14 major Japanese women’s magazines have published articles on Rooibos in their June and July publications, espousing the tea’s effect on health and beauty. Anti-aging is one of the key words used in the articles and is attributed to the anti-oxidative power of Rooibos. The campaign coincides with the launch of a new RTD Rooibos product by one of Japan’s largest beverage companies. Courtesy of Nikkei Business Publications, Inc., the articles published in two of their magazines can be seen at the following links: ecomom (24 June 2013) and Nikkei Health (July 2013)

Typhoo Tea wins Green Supplier of the Year Award

In June this year, the British company Typhoo Tea won the Green Supplier of the Year Award at the Liverpool Daily Post Regional Awards held in Liverpool. Typhoo Tea’s Herbal Creations product range includes Green Rooibos and Honey. To reduce its impact on the environment and its CO2 emissions, Typhoo Tea chose to import its teas through the Port of Liverpool, which is closest to its distribution centre. Read more.

Celebrity Apprentice team serves Rooibos to impress

One of the episodes on NBC’s Celebrity Apprentice with Donald Trump featured South African Rooibos. The one team had a meeting with tourism executives from South Africa and chose to serve them Rooibos. Watch DVD clip.

Donating Rooibos to Food Bank in Holland

Rooibos Ltd donated 100 kg of Rooibos via the Handelsveem in Rotterdam to the Food Bank in The Netherlands. Volunteers at the Food Bank Foundation (Stichting Voedselbank Waalwijk - De Rijglaars) repacked the Rooibos into smaller packs to give to people who are struggling to make ends meet. Handelsveem also waived its handling fee. Find more information here.

Children from Solomon’s Haven visit Rooibos Ltd

A group of children from Solomon’s Haven visited Rooibos Ltd’s head office in Clanwilliam where Riana du Toit, Public Liaison Officer at Rooibos Ltd, told them the story of Rooibos. Solomon’s Haven, run by “mother” Maria Solomon, is a home and place of safety for children taken from their parents.

Singapore Airlines serves Rooibos

Along with regular coffee and tea, Rooibos has become one of the menu options on Singapore Airlines’ Singapore-Johannesburg-Cape Town route. See menu.

Rooibos a healthy option for tots, tweens and teens

The online magazine Spice4Life recently asked: Do you know how you and your children can cut down on a whopping 51 100 calories a year, enjoyably, effortlessly, inexpensively and without dieting? This can be achieved by, among others, substituting sugar-laden fizzy drinks with healthy Rooibos. Read more.

Rooibee Red Tea honoured at North American Tea Championship

Rooibee Red Tea, the Louisville-based maker of the only bottled USDA-certified organic Rooibos on the market, achieved second place at the 2013 North American Tea Championship. The judging panel looked for flavour, body, colour, clarity and balance. Rooibee Red Tea’s Peach flavour was honoured in the Ready-To-Drink, Herbal category of the Iced Tea class. Read more.

Get ready for Freshpak Fitness Festival, Clanwilliam, 5 October 2013

A festive vibe awaits families, friends, teammates and training partners at the Western Cape's biggest multisport festival which takes place in and around Clanwilliam on Saturday, 5 October. This year, the festival celebrates 27 years of testing the abilities of both rookies and professionals as more than 1000 fitness enthusiasts descend on Rooibos country to take part in various swimming, cycling and running events. Read more.

Rooibos and Cederberg Arts Festival: teaming up to grow local talent

In May this year, Rooibos Ltd was once again one of the main sponsors of the annual Cederberg Arts Festival. “We sponsor the Arts Festival to bring performing arts and visual arts to smaller towns and also to develop local talent – therefore Rooibos Ltd sponsored the community production DORP (‘TOWN’)” says Gerda de Wet, Communication Manager at Rooibos Ltd. The programme included the popular Laager Rooibos Women’s Event with talks, food demonstrations and lunch. Read Rooi Rose article.

Clan F/C plays soccer in Rooibos-branded clothing.

Rooibos Ltd sponsored the soccer kit (clothes and balls) for the under-15 team of Clan F/C. The team’s manager and coach, Gerald Daniëls, is an employee at Rooibos Ltd. Says Daniëls: “I’m trying to keep the children off the streets by teaching them skills. The team plays matches against other teams from Clanwilliam and the surrounding areas.”

CAPTION: Gerald Daniëls (left), Gerda de Wet (back), Communication Manager at Rooibos Ltd, and Jonathan Jansen (right) with the under-15 team of Clan F/C with their Rooibos Ltd-branded soccer gear.


Rooibos Ltd sponsors Op de Berg Rugby Club shirts

The Op die Berg rugby teams of Wupperthal in the Cederberg received new rugby jerseys from Rooibos Ltd. The two first-league rugby teams recently played against the Young Black Arrows at Skurweberg near Clanwilliam. The players are excited about their new Rooibos-branded rugby gear.

CAPTION: From left are Katriena Abrahams (Club secretary), Bertrandt Gertse (captain of second team), Gerda de Wet (Communication Manager, Rooibos Ltd), Benjamin van Rooi (captain of first team) and Jan Abrahams (chairperson).

New corporate wear for professional look at Rooibos Ltd

Rooibos Ltd invested in new corporate clothing for women employees who work in support services roles. “This will help to create a professional image and carry out our brand value of quality. This is important, especially for client-facing staff members who work directly with external clients and the public,” says Gerda de Wet, Communication Manager at Rooibos Ltd.

Rooibos Ltd recognises loyalty with Long Service Awards

Various employees in Rooibos Ltd’s Processing Division recently received Long Service Awards to thank them for their loyalty over the past ten years. They were Ricardo Beukes, Rohane Goeieman, Rodney Hearn and Christiaan Swartz.

CAPTION: Commended for 10 years of service in Rooibos Ltd’s Processing Division were (back) Ricardo Beukes (Control Officer: Processing) and (front from left) Christiaan Swartz, Rohane Goeieman and Rodney Hearn.

Rooibos ice cream in the Serengeti

Rooibos is versatile and it is used in recipes worldwide. A delectable Rooibos ice cream is served in Tanzania's Serengeti National Park. See article.

Make Rooibos ice cream from award-winning A touch of Rooibos
Jaco Slabber

300 ml milk
5 Rooibos tea bags
300 ml cream
7 ml vanilla essence
125 ml Rooibos Syrup (recipe below)
100 g (120 ml) castor sugar
6 egg yolks
4 egg whites

1. Heat the milk with the Rooibos tea bags until almost boiling. Remove from the heat and discard the tea bags.
2. Stir the cream, vanilla essence, Rooibos syrup and sugar into the milk and return to the heat. Stir in the egg yolks. Stirring continuously, bring the mixture almost to boiling point. Remove the saucepan from the heat. Set aside to cool completely.
3. Beat the egg whites until stiff. Fold into the cooled mixture. Churn in an ice-cream machine till frozen and keep in the freezer until serving.

If you do not have an ice-cream machine, pour the ice-cream mixture into a shallow dish and place in the freezer for 90 minutes, beating well with an electric beater at 30-minute intervals to prevent large crystals forming in the ice-cream. Leave in the freezer until frozen.

Makes about 750 ml ice-cream


Rooibos Syrup
Anida van der Spuy

2 litres (8 x 250 ml) water
5 Rooibos tea bags
50 ml honey
280 g (350 ml) white sugar
20 ml lemon juice
10 ml vanilla essence

1. Combine all the ingredients, except the vanilla essence, in a large saucepan. Stir over low heat until all the sugar has dissolved. Boil over moderate heat for 45 to 50 minutes until reduced and syrupy.
2. Remove the tea bags. Add the vanilla essence.
3. Allow the syrup to cool before using.

Makes about 300 to 350 ml

Recreate Bushman’s Kloof recipes with Rooibos

The famous Bushmans Kloof Wilderness Reserve and Wellness Retreat in the foothills of the Cederberg Mountains serves authentic Cape cuisine. Chef Floris Smith often uses Rooibos as ingredient to add flavour and depth to his dishes. Try out his Rooibos-poached salmon, Rooibos risotto, Chai-spiced Rooibos ice cream and Rooibos milk tart.

Rooibos and vodka in RedBushKa

Supreme Beverages recently launched RedBushKa – Rooibos-flavoured vodka. It can be enjoyed over crushed ice, with mix drinks or as a shooter. Packaged in distinctive aluminium bottles, the range includes Original Rooibos Flavoured Vodka, Naartjie Infused Rooibos Flavoured Vodka and Lime Infused Rooibos Flavoured Vodka. Read more.

Nestea Red Tea launched in USA

Nestea’s range of iced teas now includes Red Tea with Pomegranate and Passionfruit. This refreshing drink with its natural fruit flavours is made from South African Rooibos. Read more.

Rooibos in new product innovations

Rooibos is extremely versatile. Here are some of the ways to get your daily Rooibos boost:

  • Try flavoured or blended Rooibos as an alternative to regular Rooibos. Almond vanilla, apple spice, strawberries and cream, cinnamon-orange, cherry-banana and mint are just a few of the flavours in a wide range of options available in the market.
  • Quench your thirst with iced Rooibos in a variety of flavours such as apple, lemon or pineapple.
  • Experiment with green Rooibos, also available as a chai tea. (Chai tea is traditionally loose-leaf tea boiled in a pot with milk and water.)
  • Order a delicious Rooibos latte or Rooibos cappuccino "hot or iced" available at most coffee shops. These innovative new products are made from Rooibos in a novel espresso format.
  • Keep instant Rooibos on standby as an ultra-convenient and economical thirst-quencher.
  • Look out for fruit juices, yoghurts and sweets containing Rooibos extracts.
  • Use Rooibos in your cooking as a basis for stews and marinades.
  • Rooibos is used more and more in skincare and household products such as soap, foam bath, body scrubs, bath salts, moisturisers, toners and facial masks, as well as room and linen fresheners.

Rooibos versus cancer and heart disease

  • Rooibos slows down the development of cancerous skin lesions.
  • The complex mixture of polyphenols in Rooibos may help protect against free radicals. (Free radicals are unstable molecules that can damage the DNA in cells, leading to cancer.)
  • These free radicals can also oxidise cholesterol, leading to clogged blood vessels, heart attack and stroke. The antioxidants in Rooibos can neutralize these free radicals and help to limit their impact.
  • Rooibos increases the antioxidant status of rats’ livers. This could result in Rooibos being used in the treatment of chronic liver disease. Based on recent research done in the Slovak Republic, this research team recommends Rooibos for people with chronic liver problems.
  • Rooibos protects the brains of aged rats against oxidative damage. This could play a role in the treatment of Alzheimer's disease.
  • Many of these findings require more research before specific recommendations about the use of Rooibos can be made, and therefore several research groups around the world are currently working on Rooibos.

How Rooibos may help to prevent cancer

  • Rooibos may prevent the healthy cell from undergoing mutagenesis (by binding free radicals, increasing the antioxidant capacity of the liver and helping the liver to cope with carcinogens).
  • Rooibos may prevent a cell with damaged DNA from becoming a cancerous cell.
  • Rooibos may prevent cancerous cells from multiplying and forming a cancerous tumour.
  • Some of the Rooibos research at South Africa's Medical Research Council focuses on how Rooibos inhibits the development of cancer cells.

How cancer develops

  • When a healthy cell is exposed to things such as cigarette smoke, alcohol, the sun, pesticides, chemicals in our environment, viruses or even a high fat/high salt diet, at high levels or for a long time, its DNA may be irreversibly damaged. This is the first step in the development of cancer, but does not always lead to cancer.
  • With on-going exposure to these detrimental factors, the cell may lose its ability to control the cellular growth processes and become a cancer cell.
  • If the exposure continues, the cancer cell can start to multiply and form a mass of cells, called a tumour.

Rooibos can protect and support the liver

New evidence suggests Rooibos can protect and support the liver
A recent study at the Oxidative Stress Research Centre, Cape Peninsula University of Technology (CPUT), has proven the ability of Rooibos to improve liver function and protect the liver against oxidative damage.

In this 10-week study, 80 male rats were treated with a liver-damaging chemical known as t-BHP (Tert-butyl hydroperoxide). The study showed that giving these rats access to Rooibos (instead of water) helped to protect the liver against structural, enzymatic and biochemical damage, and could even reverse some of the damage already present in the liver. The findings of the study have been published in the journal Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine. The full scientific paper is available online here.

"These findings provide biological evidence that Rooibos can protect the liver and that it has potential to be used as a supporting treatment for liver disorders," says Dr Wale Ajuwon, researcher at CPUT, who led this investigation as part of his doctoral study.

"Liver diseases and drug-induced liver injuries are a leading cause of death around the world, and synthetic drugs used to treat liver disorders often cause further damage to the liver," Dr Ajuwon points out. "That is why it is so exciting to present this evidence that Rooibos can be used as a liver protector and an adjuvant therapy for the treatment and management of liver disorders."

"Although this study was done in animals, they give us insight into mechanisms of what might be taking place in the human body and I believe that they are useful to make recommendations to people."

Dr Ajuwon came to South Africa in 2010 to study at CPUT. Three years later, he is an avid Rooibos fan and is now also encouraging his friends and family in Nigeria to have at least six cups of Rooibos every day. "I encourage them to drink Rooibos, because it is safe and contains a plethora of polyphenolic antioxidants that have been shown scientifically to have beneficial effects," he says.

Dr Ajuwon studied at CPUT under the leadership of Prof Jeanine Marnewick, one of South Africa’s foremost researchers in the field of Rooibos and oxidative stress.

This study was funded by CPUT.

How to use Rooibos in everyday cooking

Using Rooibos in recipes will add nutritional value, colour and flavour to your food and drinks.

  • Nutrition: The mineral content of Rooibos will increase the nutritional value of any dish.
  • Food preparation: A supply of prepared Rooibos can be kept in the fridge. Use it in food preparation and for diluting fruit juice or concentrates.
  • Iced tea: Make delicious iced tea by mixing chilled Rooibos with sugar and lemon juice, or blending it with your favourite fruit juice.
  • Red Irish: End a meal with Red Irish instead of Irish coffee by substituting the hot coffee with hot Rooibos.
  • Recipes: Substitute Rooibos for milk or water in any recipe. Make a delicious filling for milk tart by dropping Rooibos teabags into the milk before heating it.
  • Dessert: Give your family a healthy, mouth-watering dessert by baking apples in Rooibos instead of water. Place the apples in a baking dish, pour Rooibos around them and spoon it over the apples occasionally while baking.
  • Dried fruit: Soak dried fruit overnight in Rooibos. No additional sugar will be needed when cooking.
  • Marmalade: Cook fruit in Rooibos to make a delicious, colourful marmalade.
  • Marinades and tenderisers: Use Rooibos as a base in marinades for meat and chicken, as it is a natural meat tenderiser.
  • Stews and casseroles: Replace the liquid in stews and casseroles with Rooibos. It not only adds a rich flavour, but also tenderises the meat.
  • Sauces: Add Rooibos to sauces for extra flavour, and use it to dissolve stock cubes.