FOI release

DfT: tea and coffee

Response to Freedom of Information request about consumption and costs of fair trade and non-fair trade tea and coffee paid for by DfT.


DfT: tea and coffee

This file may not be suitable for users of assistive technology. Request an accessible format.

If you use assistive technology (such as a screen reader) and need a version of this document in a more accessible format, please email Please tell us what format you need. It will help us if you say what assistive technology you use.


This is a response to a Freedom of Information request about tea and coffee refreshments paid for by the Department for Transport (DfT).

The requester asked about:

  • the yearly cost for
  • the number of people consuming
  • the cost of fair traded and non-fair trade (both totals and by unit) plus the purchase cost difference for

tea and coffee within the Department for Transport.

The response states that the Department for Transport does not purchase tea and coffee directly - although an exception was found at the Marine Accident Investigation Branch (MAIB) who spent £290 in the previous 12 month period.

Our letter explains that records of numbers of people consuming tea and coffee are not kept and that the total amount spent on fair traded and non-fair traded beverages has not been supplied due to the costs involved in sourcing the answer.

Per unit cost of tea and coffee to DfT staff is

  • 80 pence to £1.40 for fair trade coffee
  • 45 to 60 pence for non-fair trade tea

depending on cup size, with MAIB paying £16.50 rising to £20.88 for fair trade coffee bulk bags.

Published 20 February 2011