The Top Five Functional Tea Trends Of 2023 And Why They Will Change The Way You Sip
Jan 13, 2023
Sipping trends are changing are we here with a 2022 guide on trends that have taken over the tea world. Whether you are an occasional tea drinker or an outright sommelier who can talk tea with the best of them, you should know what is guiding our sipping habits in the last year.
While tea is an ancient tradition with certain unchangeable rituals, it is also an evolving culture that has adapted to modern times to suit new adaptors and to bring fresh new takes to old tea fanatics.
Whether it's a new flavor profile, a loose-leaf premium experience, or the packaging they come in, tea rose to the top of the food trends in 2022. Let’s look at the moments that brought tea to the forefront in 2022.
Functional Tea Trends of 2022
Tea saw a reemergence of flavors and an evolution in the way we drink this past year. In addition, this year, we saw functional blends take the top spot in trending picks from consumers as well as more sophisticated buying habits.
Functional Blends found their sweet spot in 2022 when drinkers sought added benefits in all food groups. This means that consumers wanted the maximum value out of their food purchases and were thinking beyond sheer pleasure and toward a health benefit.
Consumers are seeking an authentic, transparent brand experience with every purchase. They want to know more about the brand story and the Estate story behind the leaf with tea. Knowing where it comes from, how it is harvested, and the special care taken to ensure the land’s purity is part of discerning a quality tea purchase from one that is mass produced.
Take the Maikabari Estate that produces Darjeeling over the breathtaking hills of Kurseong, founded more than 160 years ago and part of one of the oldest tea-growing traditions in India. Tea aficionados know how special it is to get their hands on a first flush from an Estate like this and this knowledge has elevated tea culture purchasing.
Tea has always been thought of as a healthy beverage choice in a market of mass-produced artificial drinks. But, this year, tea drinkers wanted to learn more about functionality, and Tea Estates worked to infuse blends with herbs and flowers that were both aromatic and functional. Think Luxmi Estates Astounding Ashwagandha that pairs the apoptogenic root with anti-inflammatory turmeric, and digestive wonder ginger root to make a wellness-packed blend.
Premium Loose Leaf
It’s time to give cheap, mass-produced, plastic-material tea bags up for good. Thanks to 2022, loose-leaf teas are showing us back to the ancient traditions that brought us the best tea leaves stored in an airtight metal tin or wooden box. Loose leaf tea traditions bring us back to steeping premium leaves and giving them room to unfurl and expand.
Brewing loose-leaf tea also offers a higher return in micronutrients such as naturally occurring minerals and vitamins. Preparing loose-leaf teas also creates a bolder, quicker, more consistent brew.
Trends are as much for the seasoned tea drinker as they are for the new adaptors. Producers have harnessed the magically tart and sweet profile of Hibiscus to create the vibrant red tea trend that has taken over this past year. Newer tea drinkers preferred robustly flavored teas in 2022 instead of single-leaf versions. The Gen Z drinker is often not after the ritualistic preparation of a premium loose-leaf tea with an excellent Estate story and moves more towards a fruit or flavored profile like the uber-popular Hibiscus. There is no better place to try this trend than with Luxmi’s African Rose blend featuring the Vitamin C packed star of 2022, hibiscus.
Turmeric, the golden spice of India, has found its way into 2022’s favorite tea blends. Used in healing for centuries in both Indian and Chinese natural medicine traditions, turmeric is a seamless partner to the warm renewing qualities of a good cup of tea. This is also part of the aforementioned functional tea blend trend, where this earthy spice has a natural ability to reduce inflammation and boost immunity.
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