6 Tea Businesses to Watch in 2021

Over the past several years, a lot of new tea businesses have emerged from all corners of the globe. During the COVID-19 pandemic, many tea shops have had to move online to keep spreading the love and joy of tea. However, for some of the companies on this list, they persisted through the worst of times.

While some of the entities on this list of “tea business to keep an eye on” may not be brand-new, their emerging popularity and their business models have certainly moved them into a spotlight of their own. Now that more and more people keep discovering their love for tea, here are six tea businesses from all over the globe that you should be on the lookout for, as they all may become larger players or influencers in the world of tea.

1. Tea Runners

Tea Runners is a relatively new tea-subscription company that sends out monthly curated selections of tea to your doorstep. While this company has been lying low since a few years before the pandemic, it started to explode in popularity over the past year. What makes this subscription company stand out is their ability for customization — which reaches a wider range of tea-drinkers than other subscription services. This is a company that is currently in its beginning stages of hitting main-line success and is a company to watch.

2. Analogue Tea

Analogue Tea is a company that started infusing its love of tea out of Sydney, Australia. With a pastel theme of keeping tea simple, they focus on a small selection of tea and teaware with a strong emphasis on elegance and grace. They also stand out as all of their product photos are taken on analog film (thus, how they got their name). Although their selection is now small, they launched with a strong selection of teas and plan on expanding further. This company is worth keeping an eye on and is only a matter of time before they further launch into the global tea community.

Analogue Tea

3. Anmo Art Cha

We now travel to the other side of the globe to find ourselves at Anmo Art Cha. While this company has been in operation for almost eight years, serving the greater Dusseldorf community in Germany, the pandemic almost forced them to close their doors. However, after launching their website only a few years ago, their fun art-deco aesthetics have caught the attention of the greater tea community. Now that Anmo Art Cha is creating more of a name for itself amongst tea lovers, they’re making their way to be a larger contender in the global tea market. Who knew that Dusseldorf, of all places, is where we should be keeping an eye for expansion for the greater love of tea?

4. Akova Tea

Akova Tea quickly made headway in the tea industry with its ability to innovate an online tea experience. While already winning an award earlier this year for their innovation (they won in the Unique Customer Engagement category at the March 2021 Tea Tycoons awards program at the World Tea Virtual Summit), they changed the game by creating an interactive three-month subscription box. After sending out their first month's box, they curate the following months based on how you review the teas. On top of having an interactive subscription service, they also offer customizable tea-blends to help better match your palate. While they have a heavier focus on flavored/scented blends, they’re certainly moving to the beat of their own drum. This is one company that should not be ignored.

5. Tea Thoughts

Tea Thoughts may not be a new name to some. While only ran by a single person, Tea Thoughts started exploding in popularity during the pandemic after adding various tea-themed items to their shop. While managing to find new ways to celebrate tea through tea-themed jewelry, pins, stationery, and various tea-related memorabilia, Tea Thoughts started to catch the eye of the larger tea community. Now, the online shop quickly sells out upon new product drops and is creating a massive wave on social media. While Tea Thoughts is on the cusp of mainstream popularity, this company somehow strikes a chord with its audience. With this, this is one entity that is worth keeping an eye on.

Tea Thoughts

6. GuShu Studios

GuShu Studios is the name of a lone potter who surfaced onto the scene in December of 2020 and has quickly gained a larger following on social media. While focusing on pottery that consists of teacups, gaiwans and other various tea wares, their teaware is quickly making its rounds all over the community. GuShu Studios has already quickly made a name for themselves as a serious contender in the larger world of teaware and tea-related pottery. With how quickly they’ve managed to captivate an audience, as well as having a large number of beautiful pieces, they’re worth watching. Buy their teaware now (while you can), so you can say you were able to obtain one of their early pieces before they hit it big-time.

To learn more about each of the companies, click the links above or find them on social media.

Cody Wade, also known by his blog name "The Oolong Drunk," has been tea blogger and tea educator for more than five years. His passion for tea started with oolongs, but he has grown to appreciate every aspect of the tea industry. He's also given lectures at the Houston Tea Festival and the Mid-West Tea Festival, and he notes that he's enthusiastic with his passion for tea education and bringing people together to make the community stronger.