Tea And Wine For Life: The Julia Ruffin Project

Tea and Wine for Life: The Julia Ruffin Project | Researching Quality of Life Papaya Leaf Products

The Julia Ruffin Project



Impact Statement


The Julia Ruffin Project stands out as a socially strong, almost philanthropic endeavor to bring natural healing to people who suffer from auto-immune diseases and to prevent sickness and early death for others. The heart of the Project is such that can impact the life and health of many people all over the world. The core micro-farming and light manufacturing Project builds-out into packaging and advertising focused on markets for finished product sales first on the Island of Jamaica and then for export.


The Project is essentially green, recycling excess from existing farming projects growing papaya fruit in Jamaica into new farmed and manufactured products on island that may save and preserve lives all around the world.



Business Objective


The Julia Ruffin Project partners with specific micro-farms to grow young papaya leaves and dry them to drink as a tea. The papaya leaf tea is produced with a specific grow method for the consumer market with a goal to look and taste as good as other specialty teas in the high-end market space. The objective of the Project is to produce and make markets for the tea while, with the assistance of qualified researchers, prove and promote its unique life-giving properties. Papaya leaf tea has expectant cash markets and a socially profitable future.


The by-product of the Project is fresh papaya fruit pulp. The pulp will be manufactured into an exquisite dry white wine that contains the basic fermented papaya that may rival the well documented medicinal qualities known in the market as FPP, (Fermented Papaya Product). The Project made and tested the wine product in 2011 and it has been reviewed by an award-winning vintner. Some of the clinical studies and health benefits of fermented papaya are documented in Studies on Papaya Wine, 2013 by V. Robertson, and are also made available on the blog and website at www.papayaleaves.wordpress.com and  www.papayaleavesforcancer.com




The Project researched the history of enzyme therapy specifically related to the unusual occurrence of the enzyme papain in the papaya leaf and its effect as a tea. The research was documented in the paper Studies on Papaya Leaf Tea, 2009 by V.Robertson. The enzyme papain and other protein dissolving enzymes have shown systemic effect on cancers and malaria, inflammation, arthritis, and bronchitis. The tea has also shown effect with our research partner in the lab at Clemson University as applied topically on skin cancers and legions.


In a five year program the Project tested growing the leaves in three states; Georgia, South Carolina, and North Carolina. From this research the Project discovered the opportunities for markets based on a grow method and specie selection to produce young leaves with significant alkaloid material for medicinal use and for the mildest tasting tea. The young leaf tea is milder and more flavorful than a green tea. The founder of the Charleston Tea Plantation, the only tea plantation in the United States, commented that the tea has a beautiful “cup”, for its color and presentation, and commented that the standard market leaves are bitter. Our young leaf tea is mild and sweet. In September, 2013 Teaview rated our tea 8/10 and commented that “…This young leaf tea definitely ranks among the most unique and memorable teas that I have reviewed over the years”. https://www.teaviews.com/2013/09/24/review-julia-ruffin-project-ltd-papaya-leaf-tea/


Research has continued with the collection of related university studies around the world published on the blog at www.papayaleaves.wordpress.com . In 2014 the Julia Ruffin Project contracted with the University of the West Indies in Mona, Jamaica to study its tea and wine products for their effect on disease, specifically cancer. The Medical University in Havana, Cuba and the University in Mauritius agreed to participate. The University of Georgia in Athens, GA USA is also standing by to lend research assistance.



Marketing Young Leaf Tea


Our young-leaf papaya leaf tea has significant market advantage for taste and medicinal effect compared to existing products at market. With box packaging we can capture sixty-five US dollars per pound; three times the revenues of our competitors, who market the tea as a loose-leaf herb named “cut papaya leaf”. This pricing structure, however, is in line and competitive with standard filter-bagged and boxed specialty teas in the US market.


The current market for “cut papaya leaf herb” is a demand-driven market in the USA as the product is constantly in back-order or unavailable from herbal wholesalers. Our specialty tea grade product can reach a deeper market and achieve significant, sustainable profits. In addition to on-line marketing, we will market through high-end grocery, direct to coffee distributors, cancer organizations and clinics.


The Project website marketing www.papayaleavesforcancer.com is now eleven years old. Consumer markets exist in the US and around the world for cut papaya leaf. In the US it is sold by the pound via online sales to the consumer market for fifteen to twenty-five dollars per pound including shipping. We have an opportunity to market this specialty tea-grade product online via herbal wholesalers, and to market our branded young papaya leaf tea direct to clients all over the world for significant profits and recurring revenues.


Opportunity exists for the Project to market young papaya leaf tea to coffee houses. Our plan is to bring contemporary methods to drink the tea such as cold bottled. Our unique blend of South American mate and young leaf papaya is particularly unique in taste, and the mate is energizing. In combination, the two herbs oxidize into an emerald green on oxidation after three hours. Even green tea cannot compete.


Given that papaya leaf herb is offered in clinics as alternative therapy in fourteen countries, we have an exciting venue for the Project to offer a significantly better tasting medicinal tea product than currently exists anywhere else at market. Papaya leaf tea can compete and surpass green tea for taste and medicinal value.


Marketing Our Papaya Wine


Fundamentally our marketing of papaya wine will be through press related to its purported medicinal effect. Fermented papaya fruit has been used in Japanese culture for its effect on a full range of auto-immune diseases including cancer, Parkinson’s disease, AIDS, Alzheimer’s, diabetes and many others including use for general health and anti-aging. In addition, a recent toxicity study shows that papaya wine does not seem to affect the liver as other wines do. Our wine recipes follow form to produce a medicinal and culinary product. We will seek press related to our wine from cancer centers, health magazines, local papers, and will seek assistance from JAMPRO. In addition, our partnership with the University of the West Indies in Mona, Jamaica will publish findings on our products.


Jamaicans can appreciate this unique wine-tonic which can have a strong market on the island. Our marketing on island will begin direct to resorts in exchange for rooms. It is also a perfect place to introduce a new wine to the world because the all-inclusive resorts can introduce the wine and its medicinal benefits to their guests.


The international export market target is ninety percent of sales and can be called up from our branded website for the wine, social media, and sales to wine wholesalers. We expect repeat business from our customers who will most certainly feel the effects of this tonic.


Production and Partners to Farm


Unique Grow Method

Our unique method of growing and drying papaya leaf tea produces a culinary product that rivals green tea.


Jamaican Farms

The Project in Jamaica plans to grow papaya leaves based on our unique grow method in partnership with existing organic farmers on and near the Blue Mountains.


Our young papaya leaves will also be grown on organic micro-farms in St Catherine area and in the South part of the island of Jamaica where small plots of land have been passed down from generations. Grow season is all year long. The farmers will be contracted and trained on our grow methods, supplied with proper seed stock, and managed as part of our team via our tea packers, fruit processors, UWI partners and ag associations. Micro-farms can be as small as a half-acre and are managed by proprietors on their owned property.


Fruit Processing and Papaya Wine Production


Jamaican Wine Partners


Due to surprisingly less alcohol regulation in Jamaica than in the USA it was possible to turn our fruit processing partners into wine partners with consulting from our vintner. In 2016 we successfully completed our first small batch at Wikki Wakki beach in Jamaica. This year we have partnered with Journey’s End in Kingston to produce our wine.


Our Consultants


Steve Shepard, RayLen Vineyards, North Carolina, USA

Steve is an award winning vintner who stepped in to assist the Julia Ruffin Project make papaya wine. Steve built RayLen from the ground up fifteen years ago and continues to operate the company. All of our final wine products must meet the approval of his nose before they hit market.


Bowman Yager, Georgia, USA

Mr. Yager is at the top of a long sales career with the leading distributor of office/restaurant coffees in the US. Bowman has much to contribute in consulting related to the bringing up of a new tea product. His consulting connects back to farming and packaging as it relates to the final product markets.


Bill Hall, Founder, Charleston Tea Plantation, South Carolina USA

A friend of the Project, Bill Hall tested the first papaya leaf tea from our test farms twelve years ago. Bill now consults with us to validate costing models for farming our tea, farming methods, drying standards and advice related to moving products into grocery.


Steve Marsden, Herbal Advantage, Missouri USA

For six years Steve has supported the Julia Ruffin Project by donating cut papaya leaf from his herbal distribution company and by editing and taking to press the story of the Project and the tea. Steve issued the first purchase order to Ruffin Trading Company for our tea.


Don Willis, Eagle Seed New Fertilizer Technologies, Georgia USA

Our product development in developing countries is dependent on utilizing the best and most efficient organic fertilizers. Don was brought in to consult when we discovered fertilizer monopolies and limited product selection in Jamaica.


Team Plan


Virginia Robertson

Founder, CEO Ruffin Companies, The Julia Ruffin Project

Virginia Robertson graduated the University of Missouri with a degree in Economics. She spent the first part of her career in accounting systems sales across the US, and then in 2000 was funded with a contract to start Ruffin Trading Company. The Ruffin Company exported to Jamaica more than sixty containers over the next couple of years and practiced barter that leveraged building materials for trade at every level of distribution. The company currently operates out of Atlanta and she is active CEO. For the last twelve years running Virginia has been passionate about what this beautiful papaya leaf can cure. She has done intense research on the science behind the papaya leaf, consulted with oncologists, tea plantations, and relentlessly farmed the product to find the most perfect medicinal and tasty tea in the hope to heal people who suffer from cancer. In 2010 she discovered the by-product of leaf farming to be an excess of fruit pulp, and then brewed her first papaya wine, only to discover the bountiful health benefits of fermented papaya.


Nancy Jenkins

CFO, Ruffin Companies

Ms. Jenkins has a deep experience set in operating international projects with multinational companies. She assists as coordinator, fundraiser, and financial manager for Ruffin Companies. Her experience operating large energy projects with Siemens and coordinating significant capital investments in the latter part of her career is important to keep our organization going forward.


Carol Fields, M.Div

Chaplain, Business Development The Julia Ruffin Haven

Focusing on the plan to move papaya leaf tea and papaya wine into the lives of people who have been recently diagnosed with cancer, Ms Fields will focus on the creation of a space in Jamaica that can accommodate a renewal of wellness for mind, body and spirit. Ms Fields will also coordinate this safe Haven in Jamaica for clinical studies with UWI. Ms Fields brings more than fifteen years of experience in hospice care working with one of the largest organizations of its kind in the US.


Alan Brown

VP Sales, Ruffin Trading Companies

Primarily functioning as our public relations man, Alan is dedicated to moving forward the complete vision of the Ruffin Companies. Alan has an entrepreneurial background in real estate and was successful in the marketing and sales of Monavie products in the US, which have similar purpose and market function to papaya leaf tea. Alan is a premier networker, a Georgia native with Southern grace, and a successful sales executive. Alan will bring cohesion to our company team.


Norman Wright

Product Packaging, Perishables Jamaica Ltd.

Respected for fair treatment and thorough training of farmers, diligence in product quality, loyalty to Jamaican-sourced products, competitive pricing and a patron of higher education, Norman is committed to the Julia Ruffin Team, product farming, product packaging and markets.


Edgar Munn

Internet Sales and K-cup Packaging, USA

www.bluemountaincoffee.com, Cumming, GA USA

Edgar runs a successful Blue Mountain coffee roaster and distributor north of Atlanta. He is the nephew of Keble Munn and grew up as a boy in the coffee business in Jamaica. Edgar has been working with the Julia Ruffin Project for four years on a project to blend the papaya leaf with coffee in a K-cup and sell through his internet-based distribution.


Business Risk


Papaya leaf tea is not a new product to market and has stood up to recent toxicity studies, yielding results that even in very large doses, the tea is essentially harmless to the human body. Our papaya leaf tea products are new and distinctive because we harvest the young leaf which is milder and contains more healing alkaloids.


Fermented papaya has a long medicinal history in Japanese culture. Papaya wine is a new product that can be marketed with old, stable traditions of healing. The wine does not have a product commodity status and no similar product competition.


The business risk includes new product marketing and production teams and their ability to efficiently move new products to market. Our team is driven, specialized, and experienced or carefully trained in the products and cultures we are working in.


Two new to market products primarily grown and manufactured together give us the ability to hedge market risk around investment in only one new product.



We are growing small crops of papaya leaf and are currently brewing five hundred sample bottles of papaya wine. Our next growth stage will require (estimates): $3000 for growing, $1000 for packing teas, $3000 for brewing and bottling, $2000 for University research, $6000 for sales and marketing. For this we are looking to raise $15,000. For continued growth, research and marketing we are looking to raise an additional $35,000.












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