Tea’s Time to Shine
For a magazine
covering two industries, it seems that tea is sometimes outshined by its bolder counterpart, coffee. I try not to pick favorites or give one more attention. This all changes in October, when tea gets to creep out from behind coffee’s shadow and revel in the spotlight.
In a recent conversation with a good friend in the coffee business, we discussed the challenges of adjusting to the economic realities of today. Diversifying could be key. He told me that perhaps putting all his eggs in the “coffee basket” was too limiting at a time like this. He will, just like so many other professionals out there, turn to an extended line of offerings to up his profits. And for folks in the coffee (or related) fields, tea is natural choice.
In this issue, Lindsey Goodwin concludes her two-part series on “Getting In,” a tea packers guide to getting their teas into restaurants, spas, bars and the like. The possibility of larger orders means a lucrative path; the extended exposure means increased brand recognition. And good news for the tea industry: as consumers learn more about this mysterious plant, their appreciation for a finer variety grows. With the demand for a superior product (or more selections of this product) there are more opportunities to sell your brand to cruise ships, airlines, restaurant chains, etc.
One can also not have an International Tea Review without navigating through some of tea’s most interesting origins. We explore the different varieties of Chinese tea, as Barbara Dufrene takes us through her travels of the country and culture. The seemingly infinite Chinese tea choices are exported to consuming countries around the globe, where they are thought of as some of the finest cups one can drink. From China, we hop over to Vietnam, a popular producer of coffee, but lesser known for their two leaves and a bud. Frank Miller details the different tea producing regions and exposes the secret that while we may not know much about Vietnamese tea, it is most likely blended into the contents of that teabag you’re currently steeping.
To keep tabs on the ever-changing tea industry, walk the show floor of the Tea & Coffee World Cup, being held in Vienna on April 25-27. Here, tea companies from around the globe will educate you on the crop, update you on technology and equipment and entice you with new products and solutions. The “who’s who” of the industry will be present for the three-day exhibition and symposium, which will bring together all the different links on the tea chain.
It’s tea time…
Tea & Coffee - October, 2009
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