More than 3,000 professionals from the tea community and vertical markets will converge on Las Vegas for the 17th Annual World Tea Expo, June 11-13 at the Las Vegas Convention Center (with a pre-conference program on June 10). The event will feature an exposition with 200+ exhibitors and hundreds of new products, more than 50 educational sessions and workshops, and the first U.S. national qualifying round of the Tea Masters Cup.
“The North American tea industry is US$3.4 billion strong overall, according to Euromonitor International research,” noted Matthew Barry, senior beverages analyst at London-based Euromonitor International and a World Tea Expo speaker. “Herbal tea is currently driving growth and accounting for approximately half of overall tea sales in North America last year, per Euromonitor data. Curated herbal tea blends with specific functionalities are set to be a trend with staying power as functionality continues to be a major draw for consumers in all areas of beverages. I’m looking forward to sharing insights and networking with the community at World Tea Expo 2019.”
Barry, who will speak about “The Herbal Tea Outlook in North America” on June 13 from 8:30 – 9:30 a.m., is one of more than 60 experts who will present a cross-section of educational sessions on the latest tea trends, business-building strategies and industry issues.
Just some of the educational topics on the agenda include: Implementing a Tea Service Strategy to Increase Sales; Opportunities for Tea in Foodservice; Presenting Tea like Wine – For Restaurants and Their Customers; Bucking Traditional Retail Trends with Private Label Tea; Seven Steps to Building a Successful Online Tea Business; How to Break into the RTD Game; Making Tea from Leaf to Cup – An Experiential Green Tea Processing Workshop; Bringing CBD to the Mainstream with Tea; and The Future of Tea – What Will the Industry Look Like?; among many more.
“World Tea Expo continues to evolve each year, bringing tea professionals and industry leaders who raise the bar with new tea innovations and world class education,” said Rona Tison, executive vice president of corporate relations for ITO EN (North America) INC, one of the sponsors and exhibitors. “We are excited to be bringing our new matcha teas and newly arrived first flush-Shincha to the lively World Tea Expo exhibit floor. The event is the perfect venue to connect and nurture new business opportunities, all while expanding ones knowledge of the ever growing market of tea. Especially, as tea is expected to grow exponentially in foodservice in the years to come.”
Some of the other companies participating on the expo floor include: International Tea Importers, Brew Dr. Kombucha, Dethlefsen & Balk, DMH Ingredients, East Indies Coffee and Tea, Rooibos Ltd., Flavor Waves, Harney & Sons, Martin Bauer Group, Rishi, t-sac and The Tea Spot.
Among the exciting new additions at World Tea Expo is the first U.S. national qualifying round of the Tea Masters Cup. The Tea Masters Cup is a unique international system of competitions for tea professionals held in four different categories: tea preparation, tea pairing, tea mixology and tea tasting.
Tony Gebely, the executive director of the American Specialty Tea Alliance, which is bringing the Tea Masters Cup to the United States, said, “If you’re attending World Tea Expo this year, stop by the Tea Master’s Cup stage on June 11 and June 12, where you’ll be able to witness a pure expression of American tea culture as the contestants compete with the goal of representing the United States at the international finals later this year. This new U.S. competition is a milestone in the North American tea community.”
Also new this year is the Kombucha Pavilion. Expo attendees can explore the fermented tea drink with its functional benefits and learn how to take advantage of this fast-growing segment and its new product offerings.
Matt Thomas, founder and CEO of Brew Dr. Kombucha, said, “We are tea brewers that began making kombucha out of our teahouses over 10 years ago. We believe kombucha is good for everyone, everywhere, and for any occasion. We love sharing our knowledge and passion for tea while pioneering new and exciting beverages, so we’re thrilled to be a part of World Tea Expo 2019 and the Kombucha Pavilion. We invite all attendees to stop by and try our Matcha Boocha recipe along with an invigorating iced tea option, and to learn how your business can benefit from kombucha.”
World Tea Expo also partnered with the Specialty Tea Institute (STI) for a series of special one-day classes at the expo – all part of STI’s expanding education and certification program. The classes at World Tea Expo include: STI Level One: Foundations of Tea; STI Level Two: Foundations of Tea; and STI Level Four – Professional Series: Defective Tea Cupping.
Peter Goggi, president of the Tea Association of the U.S.A. and the Specialty Tea Institute, said, “Tea is the most consumed beverage in the world – after water – as well as one of the fastest growing beverages in the United States. The STI sessions at World Tea Expo will help tea and related industry professionals become credentialed and thrive in this market. We’re thrilled that STI is a part of World Tea Expo with these valuable courses.”
Additional World Tea Expo highlights include: the “Tea Business Boot Camp: Beginners” and the new “Tea Business Boot Camp: Advanced”; the New “Origins Tasting Tour Workshop” with a Chance to Win a Trip to Origin; a New Hospitality and Foodservice Educational Track; The World’s Rarest Teas – An Exclusive Tasting Event; a Closing Party with The World Tea & Music Festival; the Global Tea Championship Winners Tasting Circle; and the 6th Annual World Tea Awards.
To register for World Tea Expo, visit https://www.worldteaexpo.com. Follow World Tea Expo on Twitter: @worldteamedia (#WorldTeaExpo or #WTE19).
*Figure per Euromonitor International data. (https://www.euromonitor.com/usa)