A Journey with Tea
When we started our exploration into tea subscription boxes, Tea Journeys was one of the first few suppliers that immediately said yes! As wonderful as they are to work with, they are also so amazing as they have agreed to be interviewed AND provided a wonderful giveaway for all you tea lovers! Head on to our Instagram to find out more – after the interview of course!
Tea Journeys began their journey 15 years ago in NSW, Australia. They pride themselves on sourcing directly from tea farms. Their mission is to “take you on a journey with tea”. Today, we talk to Mark, founder of Tea Journeys, and one of four Australians accredited as a World Tea Judge.
How did your journey with teas start?
I suffered an autoimmune disease from the age of 13 and was on Chinese herbs for 4 years which ultimately left me very curious about China and the natural effects of botanicals. I took my first trip to China at 23 years old, which was a bike ride, covering more than 4,000km, across as many tea plantations as possible. I also became a tour guide between 2000 and 2003. Our main business in China is an educational Travel Program. We run programs across 13 provinces in China, with almost every program involving tea, with over 7,000 students on our programs each year.
It sounds like you had an adventure of a lifetime in 2001. You returned from China with a soulful appreciation of tea, and have not looked back since. When did Tea Journeys officially start, what type of teas did you have back then, and how has the business grown over the years?
Primarily started by a strong curiosity, Tea Journeys originated in 2006 as a registered business in China, I was mostly bike riding to all the tea growing plantations across China, visiting in excess of 800 tea plantations and learning Chinese by way of learning about tea. Tea Journeys started by running student programs for international schools to visit China and learn about teas. We also started with a series of white tea balls that we had infused with flavours created from jams and steaming up through the tea. Since we have been able to maintain a continuing relationship sourcing and bringing organically grown teas from family-managed small farms dotted all across Asia, all the way to Australian shores.
You began your personal journey into understanding health in a more holistic way, what is your definition of a healthy lifestyle today?
I believe strongly in balance and consistency. Tea is something that is more like a behaviour or habit that can be followed every day.
Some of our favourite Tea Journeys teas are the Roseville Grey and Siesta Me Silly. What are some of your most popular blends, and what makes them unique to Tea Journeys? (as compared to other tea brands). Why do you think your customers keep coming back for more?
Our more popular blends are proving to be our rooibos based herbs as found in our Siesta Me Silly and Ruby Tickle – there definitely seems to be a growing curiosity towards richer sweeter dark teas.
A lot of people have some misconceptions about tea and the health benefits they can have. What words of encouragement can you share with someone who is a new tea drinker and unsure where to start?
It’s important to drink what you like and not what you are told is plainly good for you.
Tea Tasters has enjoyed working with Tea Journeys over the past year, and are excited to continue this relationship. What can our tea tasters expect to see from Tea Journeys in 2020?
We are coming out with some exciting iced tea sets, perfect for the hot summer months, and a new Darjeeling range of teas.
As part of Tea Tasters’ one year anniversary, Mark has kindly provided a special Tea Journeys giveaway! Head to our Instagram page to find out more!