Steenbergs Philosophy

When Axel and Sophie Steenbergs founded Steenbergs in 2003, we wanted to source high quality herbs, spices and teas and to do this in a way that was good for both people and the environment.  This remains our core philosophy - great ingredients done ethically and sustainably.

For Steenbergs, this means that almost all its ingredients are organic, with an extensive range Fairtrade as well.

Steenbergs has been organically certified since the outset and was one of the founders of Fairtrade spices, working closely with Fairtrade to develop the original Fairtrade spice standards and bringing the first Fairtrade cooperatives on board.  Steenbergs was the first UK Fairtrade spice business, becoming a Fairtrade spice trader in April 2005 and launching the first range of Fairtrade spices in June 2005.

Since then, we have developed the first organic Fairtrade vanilla extracts and were first to market with Fairtrade saffron.  With the acquisition of Old Hamlet Wine and Spice Co in February 2017, Steenbergs has further strengthened its positioning in Fairtrade spices.

We continually strive to improve our actions to meet this core ethic.  For example, Steenbergs two premises incorporate many eco-features - low water usage toilets, green energy including solar panelling, solar tubes and sky lights, natural linoleum and as much insulation as possible.  

Steenbergs recycles all corrugated packaging, paper, glass and metal, and continuously tries to make our transit packaging greener, by using as much paper-based material as possible.

We are a small, family-owned business.  This has disadvantages in that we have no direct leverage to make big changes in the world we live in.  But it gives us great advantages because we are not tied to the rules imposed on most suppliers that are enslaved by the standards of big retailers that merely seek to maximise profts, to maintain the status quo and to minimise actual change.

As such, we are focused on achieving outcomes, real results, that change the way business is run for social and environmental good, rather than bad.  Of course, we, also, follow and are accredited to standards of food safety and quality, environmental and social standards, but we are not (and will not be) hidebound to them.

For a detailed review of Steenbergs way of working, please visit The Steenbergs Way.