It was 'absolutea' wonderful catching up with Emma and Damien of Love Tea and finding out all about their Geelong based company. As Naturopath's they know all about the benefits or different herbs and have crafted some beautiful teas with this in mind. Read on to find out more about their story and some of the benefits of drinking tea.
Tell us a bit about Love Tea. Where did it all begin? And what was your vision when you created it?
From a young age, I knew I wanted to help people improve their health. To me, Naturopathy was a great way to do this, working with herbs, and natural medicine to help improve and optimise people's health and help them achieve their individual goals. I studied at Endeavour College of Natural Health for 5 years and received my Bachelor Degree in Health Science, Naturopathy.
I started working with herbs and blending teas in my second year of university, and after a lot of trial and error, Love Tea was born. The business grew quickly and my partner Damien Amos jumped on board to help me take care of Love Tea, allowing me enough time to complete my course. He had great knowledge of herbs, organics and a desire to create products which had the least amount of negative impact on the environment.
Damien's childhood was the perfect foundation for Love Tea. He was raised on a biodynamic farm in NSW and spent a lot of time in nature. He also studied Naturopathy which was a natural extension of his upbringing.
My Mum studied Naturopathy, massage therapy and bought us up vegetarian. I was strongly influenced by this natural upbringing and really wanted to offer other people knowledge, guidance and support, to help improve their health. My vision for Love Tea was to enable people to have access to herbal blends, which they could use to take care of their health and empower them with a level of control over their health. I believe that when you start to make healthier choices with the simple things like foods or drinks, with the intention of improving your health, you open up the way to shift your diet and lifestyle, in a more holistic direction, on a much larger scale. This then has a flow-on effect and can lead to bigger changes and greater awareness of one's state of well-being.
How do you go about sourcing and creating your teas?
We travel to visit plantations regularly which helps build relationships with growers and helps us stay connected to the communities and growers we source from. Finding plantations which were right for Love Tea was based on a range of factors. The plantations needed to be certified organic, use sustainable practices and be certified Fair trade if possible. From there, we look at quality and consistency of supply. We then import these ingredients and bring them to our Geelong based warehouse...where all the magic happens! We have a small team who hand craft, blend, pack and send orders through Australia and New Zealand.
Tell us about your wellness range and the benefits of drinking tea.
Our Wellness range was designed to support common health conditions, using organic herbs which have traditionally been used to improve these conditions or reduce the severity of the condition. These blends focus more on a prevention rather than cure approach and have been designed to improve overall function of a specific condition, or system, when taken regularly, in conjunction with a healthy diet and lifestyle. Each blend is completely unique and with 72 unique products in the range, there really is something for everyone. Aside from the therapeutic benefits of individual ingredients, tea offers so many amazing health benefits. Tea is well known for its antioxidant levels but dependent on the individual spice, herb or tea, the benefits can include, anti-inflammatory qualities, digestive support, circulatory stimulant, and many more health benefits. The key is to become aware of your weaknesses and to bring herbs and teas into your diet, which can offer the support you specifically require.
What does a typical day at Love Tea look like?
Damien works Monday to Friday and his hours are dependent on how busy we are, but usually from 7:30am -5:30pm / 6pm. The day then starts with blending, packing orders and then dispatching orders. There are usually a few challenges thrown in there as well...and a lot of tea drinking!
My week is a little more of a juggling act, as life is busy with our two little girls, so I am between school drop offs and pick ups, and at work 2-3 days per week. We have an evening ritual which is brewing a Sleep tea each night before bed…it's such a beautiful way to wind down after a busy day!
Where would you like to see Love Tea in the future?
Love Tea has grown a lot in the last 10 years. It started as a very small range of teas which were sold to a few local stores. We then developed the range further and started to sell through more stores, take part in markets and events and slowly grew the business. We became ACO certified organic and developed our unique wellness blends, we put in a huge amount of work and focused 100% on the business for a few years. The business grew and we now sell through around 350 stores in Australia and N.Z, as well as from our online store.
I love that the foundation we built the business on has remained intact and that it has stayed true to the ethics and morals on which it was built. Our vision was always about providing people with healthy, tasty teas, which were not only good for them but which also had the least amount of negative impact on the planet. We feel that the products we create are of a high quality, in terms of the packaging, the ingredients, and the design of each blend, and this is something we aim to continue to focus on in the future. We hope to continue to grow and to enable more access to the Love Tea range for many years to come.
I guess for us it's less about where we see Love Tea and more about how we see it. We see this business as a very long term and holistic tea company, which we hope will continue to grow, and stay standing long after we are gone. We believe the foundations of our business are continually growing stronger and when your foundations are solid and authentic, the future will unfold as a natural extension of the values and ethics on which the business was built.
What are your top tips for brewing the perfect tea?
Use filtered water, which will not only ensure your water is pure and better for you, but the tea will also taste better, and the flavour of the tea will be stronger. Follow a temperature guide (which we list in the directions on the packaging,) to ensure you don't burn the tea leaves. Each type of tea (herbal,Camellia sinensis, or chai tea) will require different temperatures, so follow this guide for the optimum brew. Finally, take your time in preparing your tea. Like anything in life...the more effort you put in, the better the tea will taste.
If you'd like to get your hands on some Love tea, their loose leaf and pyramid tea bags are for sale on their website.