Tea Trends & Customers Tea Trends & Customers

Tea Trends & Customers

By Alan Hughes

Tea Trends & Customers Tea Trends & Customers

Over the past few years, we have been watching a few trends come and go while some are sticking around, and we are quite happy about that.

Below we dive in a bit, but in short, we are seeing a movement of people wanting to know where their products are coming from, wanting to know that the people making it are benefiting from them buying it and that the purchase they have made is one thats going to be good for the planet. This change has been hastened along due to massive changes and global events over the past few years. Still, never less, we are enjoying a movement in the right direction and playing our small part in educating where we can and sharing knowledge about quality loose-leaf tea.


Trend No. 1 - Education, Wanting to know more.
In the past year, we've seen a significant rise in the popularity of single-origin tea purchases. Thanks to the influence of the specialty coffee industry, there's been an increase in transparency regarding the origin of tea. Knowing exactly where the tea comes from allows customers to explore the tea's history, it's garden of origin, and even why it has a specific name. The French have a term for this connection between the product and its origin - "terroir" (teuh·waa), which you may be familiar with from the wine industry. By providing detailed information about the tea's origin, customers can establish a deeper connection to the place it's grown and the people involved in its processing, creating a more human connection that breaks down the barrier between the customer and the distant location where the tea is produced.


Trend No. 2 - Coffee drinkers are enjoying teas.
We've noticed an uptick in inquiries from online customers seeking a coffee substitute in the form of tea. Whether for health reasons or to reduce caffeine intake, many are interested in making the switch. However, for coffee lovers accustomed to strong, robust or milky beverages, the transition to tea can take time and effort. We've found that teas with a full mouthfeel, like Chai of Ghana or all rooibos teas such as Orange Sky, Maple Walnut or Vanilla Cacao, are a great fit and can even be enjoyed with milk.


Trend No. 3 - Is my purchase harming the environment?
In New Zealand and Australia, this is a huge issue being constantly talked about, from social gatherings at cafes to newspapers; it is on people's consciousness and rightly so. Gaining momentum as consumers become more aware of the environmental impact of their purchases. This trend is not only driven by eco-conscious individuals but also by companies and governments implementing sustainable policies. The rise of "green" products, such as reusable straws and biodegradable packaging, is evidence of this growing trend. This trend can drive significant changes in how businesses operate and the products they offer, ultimately leading to a more sustainable and eco-friendly future.


Trend No. 4 - Shopping Locally
Although tea can be grown in New Zealand, the diverse components needed for creating tea blends are typically sourced from various locations worldwide. While most customers are aware of this, some may be surprised to learn that the tea available may not be locally grown. However, by shopping locally at our establishment, customers can trust us to source the finest ingredients from international friendships and directly from the gardens and estates we purchase from. We take pride in supporting both our local community and the global tea industry while offering the best possible products to our customers.

(There is one tea garden here in New Zealand that grows tea, called Zealong, which is a 20+ year achievement. They make incredible Oolong teas)


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