The Voice of Origin
The Tea Biz Portal is a global resource for sharing commercial data and science-based insights. The portal combines weekly news that most impacts the tea industry from the Tea Biz Podcast and Blog with Tea Journey, a magazine for tea enthusiasts filled with nuanced articles about the places and people who passionately live a life of tea.
Tea is a fascinating and intricate topic… far more complex than one person can master. Our expertise resides in professionals who know the tea lands from birth and speak the native tongue. We believe that transparency is grounded in authentic storytelling, which is why the Tea Biz Portal enlists 40 voices skilled in 12 languages to tell the story of tea.
Tea Biz News and Insight - September 30, 2022
HEAR THE HEADLINES – Tea Consumption Globally Increases to an Average 800 Grams Per Person | The International Tea Committee revised its per capita benchmark, noting a 113% increase in tea consumption during the past 20 years. | Parcel Carriers Hike Rates as Delivery Demand Declines | Tea Drinkers Experience Lower Risk of Diabetes
This week Tea Biz travels to the North American Tea Conference on the shores of Lake Ontario. The three-day conference drew tea professionals from around the world. This year’s conference opened with a status report on global tea presented by Ian Gibbs, head of the International Tea Committee in London.
| NEWSMAKER – Ian Gibbs, Chairman of the International Tea Committee, London
| GUEST – Indian tea grower Padmanabhan Subramaniam
| FEATURE INTRO – Meet Padmanabhan Subramaniam, a remarkable tea farmer from the Nilgiris whose Facebook series “Knowledge Sharing is Caring” showcases farmers' successes and achievements.
Knowledge Sharing is Caring – At the height of the COVID pandemic, Indian tea grower Padmanabhan Subramaniam, with the Nilgiris Sustainable Farmers Welfare Association, organized online activities for the small growers in Nilgiris with the theme Knowledge Sharing is Caring. Since then, local tea experts and fellow growers have conducted 78 virtual meetings on all topics related to agriculture.
"We have had guests from India, one guest from the US. The programs cover different topics," says Subramaniam. "We want these farmers to have an idea on how to go with innovative ways of agriculture and upgrade themselves economically. These things we kept in mind and talked about everything from the soil up to the harvest," he says.
Tea Biz News and Insight - September 23, 2022
HEAR THE HEADLINES – FAO Reports that Progress Toward Sustainable Agriculture has Stalled in Many Regions | Sustainability remains a priority and trending, but the implementation of the UN FAO’s Agriculture goals was hampered by war, COVID-19, and climate change | Tea Relief for Pakistan | Outsider Offers $157 Million to Buy McLeod Russel India
| NEWSMAKER – Jami Lewchik, Head of TAZO and Portfolio Sustainability, eketerra Americas
| FEATURE INTRO – This week, Tea Biz travels to Connecticut to discuss with Jami Lewchik the ambitious task of certifying TAZO Regenerative’s entire line of teas and ingredients.
TAZO Adopts a Regenerative Business Approach – TAZO reformulated and relaunched four of its leading blends this summer. TAZO’s long-term ambition is to transform its products and the brand’s entire business operations into a regenerative approach that challenges what the tea industry can do and gives back to people and the planet. In renaming the brand TAZO Regenerative, parent tea company ekaterra committed a sizeable long-term investment in its tea supply chain. The focus is on support for farmers that implement practices to increase soil health and assure fairness to farm workers. Third-party certifier Regenerative Organic Alliance (ROA) praises the company for “aligning with our mission: to heal a broken system, repair a damaged planet, and empower farmers and eaters to create a better future through regenerative organic agriculture.”
Tea Biz News and Insight - September 16, 2022
HEAR THE HEADLINES – Stubborn Inflation Nudges US Economy Toward Cliff | Tea brands brace for a downturn as core inflation remains high, undermining consumer confidence | Starbucks Announces a Retail Renaissance | Orthodox Tea Exports Fall Short of Demand
| NEWSMAKER – Dr. Roshan Rajadurai, the Managing Director from Hayleys’ plantations, managing agents for Kelani Valley, Tallawakelle, and Horona plantations
| FEATURE INTRO – This week, Tea Biz travels to Sri Lanka to assess the condition of a resilient tea industry following an unsettling spring marred by high unemployment in the aftermath of the COVID pandemic. For several months tens of thousands protested the inflation-driven cost of food and shortages of basics, including fuel, cooking gas, and electrical power. The upheaval led to the resignations of both the prime minister in May and the nation’s president, who fled the country in July.
Organizational Discipline Helps Tea Industry Cope with Continual Crisis – Sri Lanka has been facing its worst economic crisis since gaining independence. Following the pandemic, many industries on the island have ceased to exist due to political and financial difficulties. However, the island’s tea industry continues to battle on. Tea Biz correspondent and PMD Tea MD Dananjaya Silva sat down with Dr. Roshan Rajadurai, the Managing Director from Hayleys’ plantations, managing agents for Kelani Valley, Tallawakelle, and Horona plantations PLC, to discuss how his plantations have adapted and continue to produce tea, given the economic hardships.
Tea Biz News and Insight - September 9, 2022
HEAR THE HEADLINES – There’s Ample Tea for Sanctioned Russians: After six months of sanctions, the tea aisles in Russian grocery stores display few European brands, but the shelves are not bare | Kenya’s Tea Industry Suffers Collateral Damage Due to Sanctions | Tata Consumer Products is on the Hunt
| NEWSMAKER – Kevin Gascoyne, partner Camellia Sinensis, Montreal, Canada
| FEATURE INTRO – Tea Biz travels to the newly remodeled Camellia Sinensis tea house in Montreal, Canada, for a conversation with partner Kevin Gascoyne: Our stores have always offered options to smell the tea, he says, but we wanted to capture that special tasting moment and offer the possibility to take it further.
The Evolution of Experiential Retail – The Camellia Sinensis retail store has undergone many physical changes since 2001 when it first opened in a space adjacent to the established teahouse, but this is the most extensive, says partner Kevin Gascoyne, one of four master tea merchants who own the venture. The company wholly reimagined and remodeled its brick-and-mortar flagship after COVID-19 lockdowns forced the teahouse to close. The new design incorporates many time-proven aspects of tea retail – the most important of which is sampling. Gascoyne explains that clients appreciate the opportunity to select their tea sensorially. But he says, “despite continued popularity and regular lineups of clients eager to visit, the changing times meant that those precious moments of magic we created with such love and care barely paid the bills. It required enormous micro-management and many staff to offer such a complete experience to so many people. We are done with the impracticalities of the sit-down visit, but we wanted to capture that special tasting moment and offer the possibility to take it further.”
Tea Biz News and Insight - September 2, 2022
HEAR THE HEADLINES – China’s Heatwave Deadly to Tea and Man | Summer yields are expected to decline sharply, and autumn teas are in jeopardy | Bangladesh Tea Workers End Strike | Study Shows Tea Drinkers Live a Little Longer
| NEWSMAKER – Alan Lai, founder and CEO of ProfilePrint, Singapore
| FEATURE INTRO – ProfilePrint is a digital food analyzer that distills sensory data from plant-based samples in seconds. The result is a digital fingerprint used to describe tea samples' quality, origin, and composition. The software is predictive and capable of making blending recommendations for tea.
A Digital Tea Fingerprint in an Instant – ProfilePrint is a food ingredient search engine platform powered by patented A.I. fingerprint technology. ProfilePrint synthesizes complex interrelated parameters and sensory data into a single digital fingerprint, rapidly predicting the quality and profile of a food sample within seconds. The company is headquartered in Singapore with sales offices in Belgium, Japan, and China. Founded in 2017, ProfilePrint is funded by leading international venture funds, the Singapore government, and strategic investors. Founder and CEO said the company “is on a mission to transform food ingredient supply chains globally - not just ours, but every customer and prospective business on a recurring revenue model.”
Tea Biz News and Insight - August 19, 2022
HEAR THE HEADLINES – As Peak Retail Season Nears, Experts Anticipate Holiday eTailing to Top $1 Trillion | Bangladesh Tea Workers Strike Nationwide | Green Tea is Good for the Gut
| NEWSMAKER – Darian Rodriguez Heyman, Executive Director of the Numi Foundation
| FEATURE INTRO – The Numi Tea Foundation coordinates fundraising efforts to bring safe drinking water and life-saving essentials to Ukrainians displaced by war.
Numi Organic Tea Together for H2OPE: Ukraine – Millions of Ukrainians have been displaced by the Russian invasion of their country. People have been forced to flee, leaving their families, friends, possessions, homes, and even homelands. San Francisco-based Numi Organic Tea wanted to do something to help and to assemble their fellow tea drinkers to help, too. They have a foundation — the Numi Foundation — that supports the communities where they farm and people in need in the Bay Area, where their head office is located. To help the Ukrainian people, Numi is partnering with two organizations, Waves for Water and MPOWERD. They have a specific goal: to raise $1 million to provide clean, safe drinking water and solar-powered lights and charging devices to up to 550,000 displaced Ukrainians.