Easy Teasy, a Newcastle-based loose-leaf tea brand which started out as a university project in 2014, has seen significant growth after starting to export its products across Europe.
Following a successful first two years in business, Easy Teasy has more than quadrupled its loose-leaf tea offering and is now producing its own tea infused chocolate.
This continued expansion has seen its products be stocked not only by retailers in the UK but also in major cities across the continent.
The company’s tea-infused chocolate has also become a big hit with suppliers in London and Paris and is now being stocked in Paris tea shop, Thé Bon Thé Bio.
Luci Cowie, director at Easy Teasy, said: “The deal to supply Thé Bon Thé Bio was a really proud moment for us. When we launched we never thought our products would be stocked in Paris.”
After receiving a bar of Easy Teasy’s chocolate as a Christmas gift, Thé Bon Thé Bio owner, François Parant, got in touch immediately to add their collection to his stock.
Luci adds: “To see images of our products on the shelves of retailers in major cities is really exciting and it’s fantastic to know that people are enjoying them outside of the region, not only in other parts of the UK but now in Europe as well.”
Exporting is a big leap for most small businesses and for Luci and Tom is was no different. Luckily for them, they were able to call on fellow North East businesses for support.
She said: “We spoke to a few other businesses that had done similar exports who told us areas to be aware of.
“As we were exporting a food item, we had to be careful that we fulfilled all of the restrictions and requirements of that country, you can do this by contacting authority in the destination country, or their foreign embassy in the UK.
“We then did our own personal research before going ahead.”
The company has seen great success since its launch as a university project by Tom and Luci back in 2014, with the company’s range now comprising of 19 loose leaf teas featuring flavours such as Peach Sencha Green Tea and Orange Blossom Oolong, and a full teaware range.
Easy Teasy’s growth is now set to continue this year with their new wholesale arm Estate Tea Co. continuing to go from strength-to-strength, and their packaging receiving a complete makeover.
The wholesale business sees the pair source and supply some of the world’s rarest blends of loose-tea, and will open up even more doors for the company in the future.
Tom, who has been delighted with the success so far and says the launch of Estate Tea Co. is the perfect next step for the business.
He said: “Easy Teasy has been a great success and has exposed consumers to new and unusual flavour experiences. We don’t want to lose any of the fun that comes from the brand and we have big plans to continue bringing new innovative flavours to the Easy Teasy brand throughout 2017.
“But we are proud to announce the launch of Estate Tea Co. This is a tea for the purist which is set to bring some of the finest teas from small, artisan growers from around the world to Britain.
“We have been working really hard alongside our contacts to secure some of the finest teas from really exclusive single estate tea farms around the world and we can’t wait to share these products through this new brand.”
As the company continues to grow, the pair are determined to ensure that their traditional values remain the same.
A key part of their business is making sure they know exactly who is growing their teas along with safeguarding farmers and producers.
Last month this saw Luci spend time with tea plantation owners in Sri Lanka finding out exactly what goes into the process.
Luci said: “It’s already been an exciting year for us here at Easy Teasy. Our range is continuing to grow and we are hoping our new packaging will give a fresh new look to our products.
“It was an incredible experience to travel and spend time on tea plantations in Sri Lanka, and seeing first-hand the hard work that goes on through the tea growing process.
“It really enforced the importance of making sure we continue to source all our products ethically.”
The company’s commitment to ethical sourcing and sustainability is at the core of its business model and has played a huge roll in Easy Teasy expanding overseas.
Now, looking forward, they are hoping to build on this momentum they’ve built and continue pushing their export drive.
Luci concluded: “We are going to continue to export going forward and keep an eye out for new exciting opportunities to generate growth and expand across Europe.
“It is the perfect opportunity to forge links with other companies and help get the recognition to become an international brand.”
Could your business benefit from expanding into overseas markets like Easy Teasy has?