World Tea Expo Gathers the Industry for Everything Tea, May 29 - 31, 2014 The Specialty Tea Community's Leading Tradeshow Offers a Platform of Buying, Selling and Education for Retailers, Distributors and Developers

LAS VEGAS, Jan. 29, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Blending fresh ideas, new trends and distribution channels with three days of focused buying, selling and education, World Tea Expo (#WorldTeaExpo) is the leading tradeshow and conference focused 100 percent on premium teas and related products. The event takes place May 29 – 31 in Long Beach, Calif. at the Long Beach Convention & Entertainment Center, and is co-located with the annual Healthy Beverage Expo (#HealthyBevExpo). The combined Expos attract around 5,000 attendees, more than 260 collective exhibitors, and top businesses and professionals from more than 50 countries. Registration is now open at WorldTeaExpo.com and HealthyBeverageExpo.com.

"World Tea Expo is a vibrant community that's at the helm of tea's massive growth in the marketplace," says George Jage, group director of The Beverage Group @ F+W Media, Inc. "This annual conference and exposition is at the epicenter of the North American specialty tea market and $8 billion U.S. tea industry, which is expected to grow an additional $7 billion by 2015.* Exhibitors meet face-to-face with target buyers, deals and key connections are made on the show floor, and business-building, forward-thinking topics are explored in the educational sessions."

As the premier marketplace for this fast-growing category, World Tea Expo attracts retailers, tea room owners, distributors, food and beverage directors, spa managers, specialty grocers, mass merchants and other business professionals. And all are seeking to experience high quality merchandise, to sample award-winning teas, to understand the latest tea innovations and notions, and to learn best practices and network with peers.

The dynamic exposition floor features "what's next" in tea, as vendors unveil and showcase new products and services. In fact, more than 30 percent of exhibiting companies exhibit nowhere else, so attending World Tea Expo is an exclusive opportunity to visit these suppliers.

In addition to the Expo, the conference education program is designed to meet the specific needs of retailers, distributors and developers with different levels of experience. Some of the educational topics include: Current Trends and the Future Outlook for Tea; How to Source & Select Teas; Cultivating the Next Generation of Tea Connoisseurs; Current and Emerging Regulatory Issues in the Tea & Infusion Products Industry; Building Your Own Successful Tea Business Close to a Teavana; The Science Behind Health Claims on Tea Beverages; and Why Ignoring Herbs Could be Costing Your Business, among many others.

"The U.S. tea market is undergoing a transformational change driven by flavor, variety and quality innovation," says World Tea Expo presenter David Sprinkle, research director for MarketResearch.com and publisher of Packaged Facts. "At the heart of the change lies specialty tea. Competition by product type and retail channel is fierce, but ultimately the tea industry as a whole is the winner, because specialty tea products translate to more consumer enthusiasm, as well as higher prices at the cash register, than the more commoditized products they are replacing." Sprinkle will present new research from Package Facts, including data collected specifically for World Tea Expo on specialty tea use by mainstream U.S. consumers. He'll present long-term trends by format for bagged, loose and ready-to-drink tea, as well as consumer trends in drinking green, herbal and fruit-and-spice flavored tea. His session will also give a snapshot of current use of trendy teas such as matcha and pu-erh.

World Tea Expo Sponsors include: Origin Sponsor – Hunan Tea Co.; Platinum Sponsors – The East Indies Coffee & Tea Company, International Tea Importers, ITO EN, Q Trade Teas & Herbs, and Teas Etc.; Gold Sponsors – Aiya, Dethlefsen & Balk, Inc., American Herbal Products Association, Dobashien Tea Company, and The Tea Spot; Equipment Sponsor – Curtis; Water Sponsor – Global Customized Water; and Association Sponsor – Taiwan Tea Manufacturing Association.

Highlights & Additional Events:

Best New Product Awards – Each year, World Tea Expo reviews and selects the very best new tea and related products from among the many exhibitors. The winners are announced prior to the show, so that attendees can explore and source firsthand.

The North American Tea Championship (NATC) Winners Tasting Circle – This is an opportunity for World Tea Expo attendees to taste "blue ribbon" teas from the NATC – all in one place. The NATC is the only independent competition that's judged by professional cuppers, to distinguish the highest quality and best tasting teas that are commercially available in the North American marketplace.

Focused Tastings – World Tea Expo offers numerous 90-minute organoleptic explorations of tea styles, tea regions and tea pairings. Some of the Tastings include: Understanding How Flavor Impacts Cost, Shelf Life and the Quality of Teas; Detecting Defects in Tea Manufacture; and Tea & Terroir – Understanding, Sourcing and Tasting Fine Teas with a Local Global Approach.

Skill Building Workshops – Designed to hone important industry skills – from cupping and blending to actually processing and making tea from raw leaf – these three-hour intensive workshops include: Bringing 3rd Wave Coffee Innovation & Excitement to Tea; Tea Cupping; Blending Award Winning Teas; Tea Processing; and New Ways to Use Tea, among other Workshops.

World Origin Tasting Tour – This virtual tour around the globe stops at eight major countries of origin, to taste tea and discover the culture and people behind them. The full-day session covers the most important tea-growing areas in the world, including: China, India, Sri Lanka, Kenya, Nepal, Japan and Taiwan. Each destination's tea culture, unique manufacturing processes and authentic teas will be explored, giving participants a solid understanding of the flavors and profiles of each region. The Tour takes place Wednesday, May 28, just prior to World Tea Expo, from 8:30 a.m. to 4:15 p.m.

Tea Business Boot Camp – Designed for entrepreneurs starting a tea retail business, this two-day hands-on program covers critical topics facing the tea entrepreneur, while providing a solid foundation of tea education. Day one covers Tea 101, the basics of tea business, marketing, legal, purchasing and inventory. Day two is all about the leaf and includes the World Origin Tasting Tour. The Tea Business Boot Camp takes place May 27 – 28.

World Tea Academy LIVE! – This is a chance for World Tea Expo attendees to experience a "taste" of what World Tea Academy has to offer. This course is the first step to achieving industry certification, as the tea industry continues to set standards and recognize leaders in the tea world.

To register for World Tea Expo and Healthy Beverage Expo, visit WorldTeaExpo.com and HealthyBeverageExpo.com. Questions? E-mail info@WorldTeaExpo.com or call 702-253-1893.

About The Beverage Group, a division of F+W Media
The Beverage Group, a division of F+W Media, Inc., is an integrated media company dedicated to providing business solutions to the global beverage industry. Events include: Healthy Beverage Expo, World Tea Expo and World Tea East. The Beverage Group also produces the North American Tea Championship, World Tea Academy and World Tea News.

F+W Media is a community-focused, content creator and marketer of products and services for enthusiasts. The Company offers a diversified portfolio of books, ebooks, magazines, events, competitions, ecommerce, education, video and more. The Company serves 20 different markets, including writing, fine art, genealogy, antiques and collectibles, design, outdoors and horticulture. Its growing portfolio includes print and online properties, free and for-fee subscription sites, educational programs, competitions and events. See www.fwmedia.com.

*Packaged Facts September 2011

SOURCE The Beverage Group, a division of F+W Media



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