More U.S. Tea Consumers Think "Outside the Bag"

Popular European Tea Retailer, TeaGschwendner, Leads Shift in America's Beverage Habits

Buffalo Grove, Ill. (March 2, 2010) - As Americans look to slow down the rocket speed of today's digital society, loose leaf tea is gradually becoming a way of life for millions of consumers nationwide.

With double digit percentage sales increases annually throughout the past decade, loose leaf tea sales have reached the billions in the United States. Globally, more than 3 billion cups of tea are consumed every day, making it the most popular drink in the world after water.

Through consumer education and a newly announced U.S. franchise opportunity, TeaGschwendner, a leading global loose leaf tea retailer with 145 shops in nine countries, is changing the way Americans think about preparing and drinking tea. The established European brand, named after its German founder, Albert Gschwendner, is weaning a coffee-addicted America away from its high energy "buzz and crash" routine, to the more steady state of mind and body associated with tea - particularly, loose leaf tea.

"Most people here in the United States used to think of tea as buying a box of generic or national brand teabags from the grocery store and dropping them into a cup of hot water. But we are finding that once people experience the fragrance, flavor and gentle aromas of loose leaf tea, they're hooked," said Joe Capp, Vice President, North America, of TeaGschwendner. "Just once and that's it. There's no going back. They're customers forever. Loose leaf tea becomes a way of life for them."

Tea contains two compounds which are known to have positive affects on health: L-theanine and antioxidants. L-Theanine, an amino acid, has shown to induce a relaxed state of concentration and reduces stress. The antioxidants found in tea have been tested extensively and are known to improve overall health.

Embracing the benefits of tea, TeaGschwendner is committed to working with growers that use environmentally sustainable and controlled tea production. "We are passionate about offering our customers only the world's top teas," added Capp. "In our search of the best tea leaves, we have visited tea gardens around the globe. America can consider us their tea ambassadors."

Specialty varieties such as those offered at TeaGschwendner are leading the tea segment's robust growth. To build its award winning collection of 300 teas offered at its stores, TeaGschwendner tests more than 10,000 different varieties from hundreds of tea gardens in the various tea growing regions. There they are screened for quality and rigorously tested.

TeaGschwendner stores evoke a "chill" attitude. Capp adds, "No hard sells at our stores. The TeaGschwendner environment and way of life for franchise owners, store employees and customers is similar to the effects of our teas - a pleasant and positive experience for all."

About TeaGschwendner
TeaGschwendner, founded in Germany in 1978, is a leading global specialty retail tea chain committed to quality and purity. With a selection of more than 300 leaf-based teas, TeaGschwendner is dedicated to controlled tea production, purchasing from growers who are known and trusted and comply with the quality criteria TeaGschwendner demands. TeaGschwendner currently operates 145 locations throughout nine countries and four continents, including the U.S. For more information about TeaGschwendner and available U.S. franchise opportunities, visit or call (888) 8-TGTEAS or (888-884-8327).