The Australian Tea

Growers Co-operative.

Growing a new Australian farming opportunity.

John Robb (Horticulturist) was first introduced to the concept of growing Green Tea in Australia over 20 years ago.

At that time, John was the General Manager of Paradise Plants – one of the largest Camellia nurseries in NSW. This nursery was started by the famous plant hunter Mr Bob Cherry. Over many years, Bob collected Camellias from all over Asia, including several different species of tea (tea being a member of the Camellia family). These tea plants not only survived in the NSW climate, they thrived.

In the early 2000’s, Paradise Plants was approached by the Department of Primary Industries (DPI) to propagate tea plants for the new emerging green tea industry on the NSW Central Coast. More than 50,000 plants were successfully propagated & supplied to Kunitaro to establish their pilot plantation.

John Robb became more and more involved and excited about this new opportunity in green tea. He has worked closely for several years with the DPI, the Victorian tea growers group, Rural Industries Research and Development Corporation (RIRDC) and Kunitaro.

In 2007, John was introduced to a consultant named Jeff Thompson who specialised in international business development, financing, partnering, government support issues and export opportunities.

This association led to the formation of a new company called Australian Green Tea Pty Ltd (AGTPL). The aim of AGTPL was to act as a catalyst to help develop the tea industry in Australia.

Australian Green Tea, Kunitaro and Paradise Plants have worked together to promote the virtues of a green tea industry for the NSW Central Coast.

Strength in numbers

The establishment of a vertically integrated,
collaborative network will encourage the sharing of skills and knowledge and allow for quality ‘benchmarking’ to further enhance the productivity of tea farming.


As part of the Co-op vision, we see potential to establish a locally grown ‘own brand’ (e.g. Mangrove Mountain Tea) for both domestic and export markets around the world. To this end we have engaged the services of local company, PSD Brand Design, to assist with designing the necessary support materials, including this Presentation Kit, to deliver such a vision.


The creation of this Co-op is only possible through the contributions of the Federal Government via its ‘Farming Together’ program. This program is administered by the Southern Cross University and is subject to strict controls. These controls ensure rigorous and independent reporting, proper checks and balances, professionalism and diligent planning. Both Regional Development Australia (RDA) and Co-ops NSW (the overarching and governing body for new cooperatives) are key partners in this project.

Expert Panel

The Co-op’s founding drivers have a diverse set of skills. This gives Members access to significant in-house expertise including:

Business development expertise

Hands-on growing & farm mngt

Plant propagation

Tea processing

General horticultural advice

Logistics & accounting

Marketing & export

In addition, the Co-op has close ties with many related entities including the Department of Agriculture, interstate tea-growers, international growers and suppliers of processing equipment and materials, RDA Central Coast and State & Federal Government contacts.

Participants from many of the above areas of expertise will form an expert panel at forthcoming planned seminars to prospective farmers and prospective new Co-op members.


Discover how you can get involved and become a part of growing a new Australian farming opportunity.

Begin the journey today!


Information Sessions

Information Sessions

There will be experts from the tea industry to provide information and answer questions on the tea farming opportunity. Includes tea growing; the economics of tea farming; processing tea; overview of the newly formed coop.

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