Food Wine Produce
FORK TALK – A CHAT WITH OUR FOOD, WINE & DINING EXPERTS Cherie Ashana Davis — owner, OrganiTea, 1/25 Progress St, Mornington

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Where does the OrganiTea story begin?
I began blending tea in my kitchen a decade ago, and what started out as a hobby has now grown into an international business. I moved from my kitchen to a converted garage out back, then into the factories. We now supply to retailers across Australia and send pallets of tea to the US and parts of Europe. We jumped from doing under 1000 units a month to tens of thousands a month and upscaled operations very quickly. 

Tell us about the ethical and sustainable philosophy behind OrganiTea.
We are focused on quality and have great relationships with our suppliers. During 2019, we became ACO compliant and that coupled up with USDA and EU certification. We are very proud of that achievement because it shows how serious we are about our products and what we launch to market. We are also moving more into sustainable packaging and processes.

Your range of tea is extensive. Is there something for everyone?
Most definitely.  I’ve spent a long time refining the blends and follow the lead of what customers enjoy. I have a recipe book with wonderful creations too. We don’t use sweeteners or flavours in any of the blends and I love showcasing the raw ingredients in their natural state.

What’s your blending process?
Everything is done by hand. I follow my recipe, weighing all ingredients, and this hypnotic ritual begins bringing it all together. My partner is a massive help. He literally works magic in the blending section of our factory. 

Why develop a SpecialTEAs range?
The SpecialTEA range has evolved recently into a chai, artisan and café range. They are a little more complex and have a completely different feel to the functional teas even though they still have all the benefits. 

And the kids’ range of tea?
Parents were asking me if tea was safe for kids to drink so I knew there was a call for it. The benefits of drinking herbal tea are documented and children seemed to be asking their parents for it.

What are some of the benefits your detox tea provides?
The detox blends are a supporting tonic and some benefits include assisting the body to flush toxins out and support the vital organs in replenishing.

And finally, is tea an anytime beverage that can be paired with food or does it need to be drunk solo for optimum enjoyment?
Tea, depending on what you choose, can be all of that and more. I personally love to drink my Earl Grey blend with a raw treat or a very naughty one sometimes. I drink herbal blends when taking a bath; digestive tea after a meal. Some of the artisan blends are like a dessert, and my favourite of all is using leftover chai to make a chai porridge, which is delicious. 

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