UK TEA MARKET? Could a retail shop survive just selling tea?


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UK TEA MARKET? Could a retail shop survive just selling tea?

Postby teabazaar » Mar 21st, '06, 11:12

I am looking to start a retail shop and would personally like to open one just selling loose tea and equipement. But NOT providing a 'sit down' tea drinking cafe. just the loose tea etc. Due to size of shops available and rents.

The UK market seems way behind the USA and you cannot buy to my knowledge tea kettles etc, just basic tea infusers.

Most people i know only drink hebal infusions in bags or coffee and think i am crazy to think about just tea sales, with them not being big loose leaf green tea drinkers.

Most UK tea only sellers outside London only sell via website if 100% tea. Ringtons have a tea delivery vans that visit homes but dont sell green tea!

Main competion high street wise is Whittard www.whittard.co.uk, but the offer in my opion is expensive and a bit coporate, flat feel.

So would it be better to play it safer and introduce a wide range of loose leaf tea sales to an existing deli?

Or an organic food store ( health benefits)


or exclusively sell tea and Coffee and roast coffee on the premises? (not many people roasting own coffee in the uk. again behind the US market)

Any thoughts on the UK market would be appreciated or how the market has developed in the USA. Do many towns have stores just selling teas?

Many thanks
teabazaar
 
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Tea shops in America

Postby kapellmeister » Apr 5th, '06, 00:15

"Any thoughts on the UK market would be appreciated or how the market has developed in the USA. Do many towns have stores just selling teas? "

I most certainly do not consider myself an expert but in my years of tea drinking i find some shops that thrive and others that tread water.It is all dependant on location,location,location.Of course markets matter but take one example:The Hawthorne tea Merchant in Portland,Oregon.Yes,they do sell coffee beans and some accessories.But their selection of teas,both loose and bagged,are astounding!And in a city known for coffee!!!But they have been doing it for at least 20 years that i know of.I don't expect a high profit is made though.Maybe enough to live on.
Guess it depends on your faithful clientel.She has folks(like myself) who buy from her for many years.And to keep so many loose teas is quite an achievement!!
I say go for it but in a small place with low overhead and to market yourself to the local community.There is where you will find your customers.Not the High Street Harrods or Selfridges crowd.They usually use bagged tea exclusively!!

Cheers,

Jim
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kapellmeister
 
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