5 Minutes with Waris Ahluwalia
Here for your interest, Waris gives The Together Project the good oil on why he started his sustainable tea business House of Waris and a bit of background on why slowing down, is part and parcel of thinking and acting better on planet earth.
What are the origins of this new project Waris?
“Wherever I went—at family gatherings, tea was served. After dinner, tea was served. During laughter and celebration, tea was served. During quiet moments, in solemn moments, in moments of grief. It was always there. In my travels for jewellery production in Jaipur, or when I went to Delhi or Bombay, tea was served. When I went to meet with the elephant organisations and local conservationists, tea was served. It was right in front of me. The answer had always been right there.
You talk about having an ‘antidote to stress’ in these products that are made using adaptogenic blends – why do you think that botanic and herbal medicines are so important, now and why are they really missing from most people’s diet?
“Our relationship to nature is broken. We see ourselves separate from nature, when in reality we are one and the same. We’re just applying band aids when it comes to our environment, which is what we’re doing to ourselves.
“Our relationship to nature is our relationship to ourselves, how we treat ourselves, how we treat our bodies, how we treat others. Do we treat ourselves with love? Do we treat ourselves and others with care?
The big questions seem to find their answer in old traditions with Waris. I am keen to know. Why did you start this sustainable business?
“This is an exercise in taking control. Our innovation is to give access to the ancient sciences and reframing the knowledge to be applicable to our modern-day lives. To say to our community: we’ve always had the answers.
“We want to show people that they have power over their well-being. Our blends are informed by practices like Ayurveda and traditional Chinese medicine. This is an exercise in slowing down.”
What’s special about your blends of teas then?
Whole root. Whole flower. Whole leaf. The highest quality ingredients and blends on the market. That’s what makes our product different.”
“We work with tea estates, farms and herbalists to develop proprietary blends that harness the power of plants, ingredients that have been under our noses for centuries. Our organic non-gmo herbs, rich in antioxidants, vitamins, and nutrients, come from just about everywhere, from Egypt to Oregon.
“Our proprietary blends include adaptogens – a category of herb known to help your body adapt to external stressors and bring your body back into balance. These herbs have been used by traditional practices including Traditional Chinese medicine, Ayurveda, and many indigenous cultures across the world from the Siberian Plains to the northwest US. Our team of certified herbalists work on the function while my focus is on the taste. It’s important that the blends are not only healing, but taste outrageously delicious.