Award Categories

See below for all The Leafies 2024 categories for tea producers and retailers.

Categories for Tea Producers

These broad tea categories are not divided into regional/country sub-categories. However, all teas will be grouped and blind tasted according to region for the judges. This allows for comparison across boundaries but will also respect regional differences. Each category judging panel comprises multiple regional experts.


White teas from all regions.

  • WN White Natural


Yellow teas from all regions.

  • Y Yellow Natural


Green teas from all regions, divided by processing methods.

  • GS Green Steamed
  • GPR Green Panned/Roasted


Oolong teas from all regions, divided by levels of oxidisation.

  • OLO Oolong Lightly Oxidised
  • OHO Oolong Heavily Oxidised


Black teas divided by regions.*

  • BC Black China
  • BT Black Taiwan
  • BJ Black Japan
  • BI Black India
  • BSL Black Sri Lanka
  • BO Black Other


All blended teas, divided by pure tea blends and tea blended with other ingredients, including chai.

  • BLC Blends (camellia sinensis only)
  • BLB Blends (camellia sinensis + botanicals)

Dark Teas

Dark teas from all regions divided by raw and cooked.

  • DTR Dark Teas (Raw)
  • DTC Dark Teas (Cooked)

Powdered Teas

Powdered teas from all regions divided by matcha and other powdered teas.

  • PTM Powdered Tea Matcha
  • PTO Powdered Tea Other

Scented Tea

Any scented teas including Jasmine and smoked teas.

  • ST Scented Teas*

Experimental Teas

For teas that do not fall neatly into any other category or demonstrate experimental farming and/or processing methods.

  • EXP Experimental Teas

New Regions / Producers

Any tea from a region that has no history of tea production or from a garden/estate that has been making tea for less than five years. Entrants may also enter their teas into other categories to be judged against more established regions if they wish.

  • NRP New Region

Fruit and Herbal Infusions

Divided by single ingredients and blends, this is a new category at The Leafies, dedicated to showcasing outstanding ingredients for infusions.

  • FHS Fruit and Herbal Single Ingredient
  • FHB Fruit and Herbal Blended Botanical Ingredients

Categories for Retailers

To qualify as a retailer for The Leafies you must sell tea from several producers direct to consumer either online with a transactional website, or a physical retail space. 

Tea retailers will benefit from The Leafies by having their tea assessed by experts who will score each tea on every criterion from leaf quality to aftertaste. An award at The Leafies will distinguish your product in a growing market and demonstrate quality and superior taste to your customers.


  • REW Retail White


  • REG Retail Green


  • REO Retail Oolong


  • REB Retail Black

Powdered Teas

  • PTMC Powdered Tea Matcha (ceremonial)
  • PTML Powdered Tea Matcha (latte)
  • PTO Powdered Tea Other


All blended teas, divided by pure blends (camellia sinensis only, eg breakfast blends) and camellia sinensis with botanicals (herbs, spices eg chai).

  • REB Blends (camellia sinensis only)
  • REBL Blends (camellia sinensis + botanicals, including chai)*

Ready to Drink

Any cold brew, kombucha or other ready to drink teas that are available to purchase.

  • RERTD Retail Ready To Drink

Fruit and Herbal Infusions

Divided by single ingredients and blends, this is a new category at The Leafies, dedicated to showcasing outstanding ingredients for infusions.

  • REFHS Fruit and Herbal Single Ingredient
  • REFHB Fruit and Herbal Blended Botanical Ingredients

Scented Tea

Any teas with a scent including Jasmine, Earl Grey, smoked teas.

  • RES Scented Tea*

Special Awards

These Special Awards are dedicated to celebrating the achievements behind the tea. The recipients will be chosen by the judges from the entrants to The Leafies who will not necessarily have won an award for their tea. Each award represents an outstanding commitment to initiatives such as community empowerment, environmental stewardship, innovation, creativity, and education.

The Leafies entry form has a dedicated section for entrants to outline their key initiatives.

Tea for Life Award

The award for the tea farm/estate/garden demonstrating community empowerment, economic regeneration and/or uplifting the welfare of the people dependent on the tea farm/estate/garden for their livelihood.

Pioneer Award

For an exciting new garden/region/producer demonstrating imagination and innovation in tea cultivation and/or manufacture.

Gaia Award

For those putting sustainability at the heart of the farm/estate/garden and demonstrating outstanding environmental stewardship.

Maverick Tea Award

For the bold, brave, creative tea producers developing successful experimental teas that don’t fall neatly into any category.

UKTA Lifetime Achievement Award

One of The Leafies highest accolades for an estate or individual who is well established, highly respected and has made a significant contribution to the advancement of tea knowledge and appreciation. It embodies the qualities of all the other Special Awards, demonstrating a long term commitment to pioneering tea culture, community initiatives and a tireless dedication to environmental regeneration.

Fortnum & Mason Best in Show Award

The ultimate tea award chosen from among all the category Gold winners. This is one of the highest scoring teas of the whole week and is voted on by all the judges as the most outstanding tea of The Leafies that year. The tea will generally win on its quality and flavour, but the story behind the teas will also be available to the judges, so in the event of close contenders, this may also have some bearing on their decision. The tea that wins Best in Show will be available to buy from the Fortnum & Mason Rare Tea Counter at their flagship London store.

Enter The Leafies 2024

Enter The Leafies 2024


Partners of The Leafies 2024

Fortnum & Mason
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