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Archive for the ‘Tea Industries’ Category

To whom do we owe the great pleasure of all the tea we sip?

Or, who are the greatest producers of tea in the world?

Just few numbers to understand where our precious “camelia sinensis” come from.

There are three countries who are holders of the greatest portion of production in the tea market: India, Kenya and Sri Lanka; it’s been said that this countries will see an incease in 2010 of their market portion, raising from 63% of 2000 to 70% in this year. This news are quite reassuring since this incredible growth is thinked to happen even though last year they all, more or less, suffered from drought and from the 2008 crisis.

This increase will be reflected in a general growth of production in the world tea market of the “camelia sinensis”: in this 2010 2.4 tons will pe produced, counting on a 1.2% of  average growth rate since 2000 each year.

Good news, good news, my brewers!!!

And to celebrate, a nice cup of tea!!! 😉

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When I sit in front of my computer for writing a new post in my blog I never start without a steaming cup of tea; it was yesterday, while boiling the water and choosing the leaf, deciding for one of my favourite- “Pleine Lune” by Mariage Frères- that I started thinking about this french industry.

The title tells it all: how can it possibly be called the tea choosen by the JAL (japanese airlines) for its first class costumers? If you need to know more, Mariage Frères is the same tea that is served at one of the Tea Guild of UK’s top ten tea room Claridge’s.

It’s becoming so popular that it didn’t even need advertisement!

Apart form that , it’s just enough thinking that french tradition of tea really started with this industry.

It all started when in 1660, the Compagnie des Indies and Louis XIV appointed Nicolas Mariage  to go to the Persian countries, to convince the Shah of Persia to commerce with France. At the same time, his brother Pierre Mariage, was sent as a special envoy to Madagascar for a similar purpose.

But actually their descendents, Henri and Edouard Mariage, were among the firsts to have success with their activity of tea seller in France, selling it to retailers, tea rooms and hotels; it was only in 198o that their company started selling to the public too.

Now, they have three flagship store in France and four in Japan and a wide net of distribution all over the world, since it has become another point of excellence in the reknowed french culture; it’s even selled in the Opèra Garnier in Paris (where I actually bought it 🙂 )!

And, a book has been freshly published to confirm the established excellence of Mariage Frères: “The French Art of Tea”.

Personally I have to say that Mariage Frères makes one of the best tea I have ever sipped. So, from my blissful condition of tea-drinker…

… I wish you a very good brew! 😉

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Twinings is so popular today that if I left the page blank, it would be pretty much the same.

Well, not really, I was just saying. 🙂

But, let’s get serious.

When you see a twinings’ tea on the shelves of  a supermarket you can’t avoid thinking about England, you’re even able to picture a traditional, old-fashioned image of it: maybe a nice lady having tea in a nice room, in her nice victorian dresses…

… or maybe it’s just me.

Anyway, Twinings was founded by Thomas Twinings almost a century before Queen Victoria went to the throne, in 1706. Anciently, it all started with a tea room situated in the Strand of London; it was only later, in 1787,  that it became a real enterprise, from production to distribution, and even one of the most famous in the reign.

Twinigs is also reknown to be the first creating the most famous varieties of tea:

  • The “Earl Gray” wasn’t really invented by Twinings, but it was the first producing it; the Earl Grey, which was Prime Minister at that time, saved a chinese Mandarin, who gratefully gifted him a tea blend and the recipe to prepare it: just the same we still drink today!
  • The “Prince of Wales” was created for Edward, His Royal Highness the Prince of Wales in 1921; unfortunatly, when he became king as Edward VIII, Twinings couldn’t sell it anymore in Englad due to the rules of the Royal Warrant, so now it can only be found outside the country!
  • The “Lady Grey”  is a delicate, fragrant variation on the more famous Earl Grey blend. It consists of black tea scented with oil of bergamot, lemon and orange. As you can easily imagine it’s named after Earl Grey’s wife, Mary Elizabeth.


Today  Twinings can be proud for being an holder of a Royal Warrant and for being one of the most selled brand of tea worldwide.

Sipping a nice cup of “Lady Grey”, Roberta wishes you a good brew too! 😉

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