NEW YORK, Jan. 4, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- This January, in celebration of National Hot Tea Month and the second annual National Hot Tea Day on January 12, 2017, the Tea Council of the USA encourages tea-lovers across the nation to share their IndividualiTEA for a chance to win $500 and a year's supply of tea. The IndividualiTEA Photo Sharing Sweepstakes, which runs through January 31, 2017, rewards the more than 50 percent of Americans who consume tea, and celebrates the countries around the world that grow over 3,000 unique varieties of tea enjoyed by Americans. Entering is easy – simply share a photo or short explanation of the unique ways, times, or places you like to enjoy your favorite tea on Twitter with the hashtag #IndividualiTEA and tag @TeaCouncil for a chance to win!
The new social engagement initiative comes on the heels of a recent Mintel survey that shows that the palates of consumers are steadily expanding, allowing them to be more receptive and open to trying new and different beverage options.1 With this in mind, January is the perfect opportunity to explore, experience and celebrate hot tea – and to fully recognize and showcase the countries responsible for growing the types of tea the world has come to love and enjoy.
"Today, the U.S. is the third largest importer of tea in the world, and the only western nation where tea consumption is growing," said Peter F. Goggi, President of the Tea Council of the USA. "We are excited to be celebrating the different countries of origin. The diverse flavors and characteristics that result from the local geography, climate, elevation and soil of each country offers a taste to satisfy every palate and occasion."
With more than 30 countries in the world that produce tea, here is a look at some of the largest that are also members of the Tea Council of the USA:
- Japan (Observer member) – is the eighth largest tea producing country in the world. Japan's largest tea production region is Shizuoka Prefecture. Nearly 40 percent of Japanese tea is made there. Visitors to Shizuoka experience breathtaking views, with tea fields everywhere from mountainsides to coastlands. Tea leaves carefully cultivated by farmers are also processed by Japanese tea refiners. The presence of tea refiners is essential to producing high quality Japanese tea products.
- India – is the world's second largest tea producer. India's variety of geographical regions, topography and climate make possible the different types of teas, each with their own distinctive characteristics. This wealth of diversity also makes it possible for India to be a one-stop shop for all types of tea – Black, Green, Oolong, Organic, Bio dynamic, Orthodox, CTC, Darjeeling, Assam, Nilgiri, Munnar, Kangra, Sikkim, Dooars-Terai, etc.
- Kenya – is the world's third largest producer of tea, and the largest producer of tea in Africa. Currently, Kenya prides itself as one of the world's leading black tea producers. Kenya has about 50 varieties of tea, which are developed to suit the seven tea-growing regions.
- Sri Lanka – is the world's fourth largest producer of tea. Teas originating in Sri Lanka that also conform to strict quality standards determined by the Sri Lanka Tea Board are known as 'Ceylon Tea'. Sri Lanka consists of seven tea-growing regions. Each region has a unique climate and terrain that give the teas of the specific region a distinct character.
- Vietnam – is the world's seventh largest producer of tea. The country is best known for green teas, but also produces Black, White and Oolong teas. Lotus tea, a green tea flavored with the scent of lotus flowers, originated in Vietnam.
This month, celebrate the countries of origin and many flavors of tea by entering the Tea Council of the USA's IndividualiTEA Photo Sharing Sweepstakes. Information on how to enter and a copy of the official rules can be found here.
About the Tea Council of the USA:
The Tea Council of the USA is a non-profit association that was formed in 1950 as a joint partnership between tea packers, importers and allied industries within the United States, and the major tea producing countries. It functions as the promotional arm of the tea industry with a primary goal of increasing overall awareness of tea by providing information about its many positive attributes. One of the Council's primary objectives is the dissemination of key scientific findings about tea to the public. The Tea Council does this in several ways including: funding scientific meetings to bring tea researchers from around the world together to share key information and identify next steps for future research projects; and working with health organizations and international scientists to disseminate information about potential positive health effects of tea consumption on a public level.
- Mintel, North American 17 Consumer Trends, http://bit.ly/2iG41ev
- Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, Global Production Data (1993-2013), http://bit.ly/2iBrcUH
SOURCE The Tea Council of the USA, Inc.