Tea processing

African tea processing industry seeks sustainability and efficiency improvements with DCO Systems

Customer challenge

Black tea processing is energy extensive. Volatility in world oil prices led to many factories switching from oil to biomass (especially wood) to fulfil their steam generation requirements. While this led to a reduction in fossil fuel costs, factories face new pressures. Costs, environmental impact and sustainability of their fuel sources are of concern. The need to identify areas of waste and improve efficiency is more important than ever.

East Africa (especially Kenya) is one of the leading producers of black tea in the world.  In the meantime, world tea consumption is predicted to reach 3.3 million tonnes in 2021. As a result, production continues to increase and yet the need to improve sustainability rises with it.


DCO Systems has implemented our sensing devices and customised monitoring systems throughout the five main stages of tea processing (Withering, CTC, Fermentation, Drying and Sorting). We provide turnkey solutions, developed with tea processors, that optimise production and raise quality standards.   

A typical, medium sized, tea processing factory may require upwards of half a megawatt of electrical power when operating at full capacity and require the generation of more than 6,000kg of steam per hour.  

The savings from optimisation of energy consumption in this environment are considerable both in terms of cost savings and in respect of reduced emissions. High rates of return on investment (ROI) are possible through considered and measured optimisations. 

Cost savings and benefits

Optimise the use of leading energy efficiency systems that offer fuel savings up to 30%, and improve your carbon footprint by reducing waste energy and recycling what remains back into your processes.

Whole system monitoring

Our whole system approach provides our clients with the ability to affordably install our sensing devices across their entire plant, enabling our clients to pinpoint and diagnose a wide range of problems in seconds, not hours, fixing system issues more quickly than before.  

Truly wireless sensing

Our sensors incorporate cutting-edge power harvesting capabilities that provide our clients with multi-year maintenance-free operation. They can be installed without the need for plug-in wire connection OR scheduled battery changes. Without intervention our intelligent monitoring software can deliver fine-grained and frequent data updates on the schedule of your process demands - not the one that a battery dictates.

Your data on any device

Our clients will receive valuable easy-to-read data and have confidence knowing exactly how their equipment is functioning in seconds, not hours, wherever they are; by email, SMS and iOS/Android notifications.

Ready to take control? Get in touch.

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