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Third Street Chai Launches RTD Teas via Whole Foods Partnership

Hey, nothing like a Whole Foods exclusive to spur a company to broaden its product line and change its name.

Long a supplier of chai and lemonade concentrates to the natural products giant, as well as independent coffee shops and natural food stores, Colorado-based Third Street Chai has developed a new 1 Liter tea line for national launch in Whole Foods and has changed its name to Third Street Inc. as well. Pricing is expected to be a mighty affordable $2.49 per bottle.

The 1 L glass bottles of unsweetened green and black tea are fair trade, organic, and non-GMO certified — checking off key boxes on the responsible sourcing side that has been pushed by WF grocery honcho Errol Schweizer.

There are deep ties between Third Street and Whole Foods, including a featured supplier listing and financing for new enterprises from the Whole Foods Local Producer Loan Program for expanding the business.

Press release is below. File this one under working hand-in-hand with the key account.

Third Street Partners with Whole Foods to Launch Sustainable Iced Teas

Beverage Innovator First-to-Market with 1 Liter Line of Organic, Fair-Trade, Non-GMO, Gluten-Free Iced Teas

LOUISVILLE, Colo., Sept. 4, 2013 /PRNewswire/ — Third Street, Inc. announces their premium new line of fresh-brewed, ready-to-drink (RTD) iced teas is being launched exclusively with Whole Foods Market. Packaged in 1 liter bottles, it is the only line of its kind that carries USDA-Organic, Fair Trade and Gluten-Free certifications, as well as being Non-GMO Project Verified. Two flavors are available: Unsweetened Black Tea and Unsweetened Green Tea. Both teas are micro-brewed from tea leaves hand-picked from the lush region of Nilgiri, India; no sweeteners are added to the zero-calorie blends.

In the effort to help supply consumers more unsweetened beverage options, Third Street worked closely with Whole Foods to develop this line of calorie-free RTD teas. The Center for Disease Control and Prevention recommends reducing the amount of sugar-sweetened beverages to help decrease caloric intake and manage weight. A recent CDC study shows Americans are drinking less sugar-sweetened beverages and are looking for alternatives.

Founded in 1995, Third Street Chai recently became Third Street, Inc. when it expanded beyond chai and began manufacturing various beverages, including iced tea. “The RTD Tea category is one of the fastest growing in the beverage industry,” said John Simmons founder and President of Third Street. “Sales continue to grow 7% annually, making it a $4.8 billion category. Within this category, the unsweetened RTD teas are showing significant growth.” According to AC Nielsen, the unsweetened RTD iced tea category grew 14.9% in sales in 2012 and 16% during the same period in 2013.

Third Street is a recipient of Whole Foods Market’s Local Producer Loan Program. Whole Foods Market launched this program to provide low-interest loans that would help its suppliers grow their businesses. Third Street, a Whole Foods Market supplier since 2000 is an avid supporter of Whole Foods Market’s responsible sourcing initiatives. Both parties are proud that this line of real brewed iced teas is made in the US, including the bottle and case packaging.

“At Whole Foods Market, we partner with suppliers who share our commitment to quality, taste and responsible sourcing – and Third Street has a long track record of creating delicious teas that our shoppers can really feel good about,” said Errol Schweitzer, executive global grocery coordinator for Whole Foods Market. “We’re excited to share their new brewed iced teas exclusively with our shoppers.”

Third Street’s award-winning one liter iced teas will retail for $2.49. They will be carried nationally in Whole Foods Market, and will begin hitting store shelves this week.

ABOUT THIRD STREET
Third Street, a Louisville, Colorado-based company, developed the first Organic and Fair Trade chai concentrates in 2001 and has been micro-brewing for the natural product and specialty coffee markets ever since. Third Street’s brewing facility is wind-powered and they compost ingredients with local organic farmers in Boulder County. www.thirdstreetchai.com.

SOURCE Third Street

Photo:http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20130904/LA68993
http://photoarchive.ap.org/
Third Street

CONTACT: Karen Harbour, 303.527.1700 x 123, Karen@3rdstreetchai.com

Web Site: http://www.thirdstreetchai.com

Source: Beverages