The Tea Board of Kenya was established on 13th June 1950 under the Tea Act(Cap 343) to regulate Tea Growing and manufacture. Under the Tea (Amendment) Act 1999, the Board’s mandate includes: licensing of tea manufacturing factories; carrying out of research on tea through its technical arm, the Tea Research Foundation of Kenya; the registration of growers, buyers, brokers, packers, management agents and any other person dealing in tea; and promotion of Kenya tea in both the local and the international markets. The Board also disseminates information relating to tea and advises the Government of all policy matters regarding the tea industry.
To discharge its mandate, the Board works closely with the Government through the Ministry of Agriculture and all organizations in the tea sub-sector which include the Kenya Tea Development Agency Limited, the Kenya Tea Growers Association and the East African Tea Trade Association, among others. All these organizations and interests are represented in the Board. The Board has 16 members, of whom six represent the smallholder farmers, four the plantation tea growers and one the tea trade. In the Board are two Government representatives - the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Agriculture and the Director of Agriculture - and two members appointed by the Board. The Managing Director is an ex-officio member of the Board. Under the Tea (Amendment) Act, the Board appoints its own Chairman from amongst the members of the Board representing tea producers.