Whereas certain teas are primarily consumed for taste and/or nutritional benefits, rose tea is preferred for its aroma as its name may suggest. Rose teas includes different types of tea that has rose petals as one of its ingredients, including green teas with rose petals, black teas with rose petals, etc. Usually, the addition of rose petals means a lighter and more subtle taste, with a hint of sweetness and a stronger aroma. The idea behind rose teas is an appeal to a wide variety of senses. Often descriptions of these teas include words such as “floral” and “beautiful”. So in addition to taste, the consumer is also treated to a sweet aroma (people often purchase flowers to smell) and a beautiful visual display (people often purchase flowers for a flower arrangement as well). Seeing, smelling, and now tasting roses becomes a very gratifying experience for the rose tea drinker.
Origins of Red Rose Tea
The story of Red Rose tea began way back in 1894 in Canada. Theodore Harding Estabrooks was born in Wicklow, Carleton County, New Brunswick in 1861. He attended Kerrís Business College in Saint John, New Brunswick and went into business himself in 1894 on Dock Street in downtown Saint John. He was a local business leader that came up with a great idea…produce and pack a quality blended tea that was consistent from cup to cup. Before that, tea was sold loose from tea chests by local merchants and quality varied a great deal. Mr. Estabrooks innovation meant that tea lovers could count on the quality of tea in every Red Rose package – a tradition that continues to this day.
Initially, Red Rose was sold mainly in the Atlantic Provinces of Canada, but soon distribution expanded into other parts of Canada and into the United States beginning in the 1920’s. Distribution initially was in cities near the Canadian border such as Portland, Buffalo, and Detroit. In 1929, Red Rose introduced tea bags for the first time.
The business continued to expand and in 1932 a new chapter in the history of Red Rose began. Mr. Estabrooks sold Red Rose to Brooke Bond & Company of England. Arthur Brooke had founded Brooke Bond and Company in 1869, starting with a single tea shop. There was no Mr. Bond, but Arthur Brooke thought it sounded better and what was to become one of the world’s leading tea companies was born. During the 1890’s, Arthur Brooke expanded beyond tea shops and into the wholesale tea market using vans to deliver his tea all over England. The Brooke Bond name became synonymous with tea throughout the United Kingdom and his company introduced a second brand – PG Tips in 1930. Brooke Bond also became a major brand in the large tea market of India. With the sale to Brooke Bond, Red Rose was part of a global tea company and flourished under the guidance of the parent company and Arthur Brooke’s son Gerald, who became chairman in 1910.
Following the Second World War, Brooke Bond established their Canadian business in Montreal Quebec and continued to grow the Red Rose tea brand. By the 1970’s, Red Rose was sold in much of the United States and Canada.
In 1985, Unilever NV acquired Brooke Bond Foods, Inc. Shortly thereafter, Unilever sold the rights to the Red Rose brand in the United States to Redco Foods, Inc. retaining the rights in Canada and other parts of the world. Production of Red Rose tea for the United States market moved to Little Falls, New York in 1988.
Today Red Rose is blended with the same care that Theodore Harding Estabrooks established more than a century ago. Red Rose contains high-grown black teas from Sri Lanka (Ceylon), Kenya, India, and Indonesia. The result is a blend that produces a full flavored cup of tea for the tea lover. We think Mr. Estabrooks would be proud.
File No：rose tea origins- CTS20
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