A $200-million tea-bar market in Arizona is starting to take shape, with more than 300 vendors offering tea and tea products.
A new breed of tea bar, the Arizonans Tea and Tea Culture, opened at the Phoenix Convention Center in January.
The company is a spinoff of a popular tea shop chain known as The Phoenix Tea Shop.
It’s located in the Phoenix-area’s north end, but is opening in Phoenix, Tucson and Mesa.
The company hopes to open more outlets in Arizona over the next few years.
ArizonansTea and Tea Cultures, Inc., owner and founder Michael Hana, says the company’s opening is a sign of things to come.
“We think this is the beginning of the shift from the tea market to the tea industry,” Hana said.
“People are looking for more alternatives to traditional beverages, like coffee or tea, that have a lot of flavor and aroma.”
It’s a shift that’s been brewing for years, said Arizonas Tea and Wine Co. executive director Tom Reimann.
The business has been growing at a steady pace in recent years, with sales topping $1 billion in 2017.
“It’s the first big move into the tea business and it’s an amazing thing to see,” Reiman said.
The tea industry is growing in Arizona and nationally, and Hana says the new market will also give ArizonnsTea andTea Cultures a chance to grow in popularity.
“The growth in the tea world is very important, and ArizonnatesTea andTeacultures will help us grow,” he said.
“This is really a natural progression in the future of the tea trade in Arizona.”
The Arizona tea industry already includes more than 600 vendors, including some that specialize in artisanal tea, Hana told ABC News.
There’s an increasing number of tea bars that are offering the same or similar products.
For example, in Phoenix alone, there are nearly 40 tea bars.
In Tucson, there’s more than 80 tea bars and more than 100 artisan tea vendors.
“There’s been a lot more attention on craft tea,” said Hana.
“It’s something that we’ve been building our reputation on.
People are buying a lot.”
The trend isn’t going away anytime soon.
“With the growth in craft tea, there will be a greater focus on quality and quality of ingredients,” said Reimans.
The trend will also grow with the increased number of consumers, Reimancs said.
People are spending more money on tea and beverage, he said, and a lot is being spent in the market.
“People are more aware of the difference between tea and beverages, and they are more knowledgeable about the tea and the tea culture,” Reismans said.
Reimans said there will likely be another expansion of the Arizona tea and wine industry in the coming years.
“If there’s a need to expand, we will,” he added.