Saturday, June 9, 2007

World Tea Expo: Keynote Address and 11:11

The first day is over and I am wiped out. I want to sleep for about a day and a half. However, I'll be getting up at 6 AM again for another early class. Not that I can complain too much--I'm having an amazing time here!

The keynote address was very informative and entertaining. It was all about market trends. I found it interesting that a large segment of the presentation was about age demographics and, though various age groups were asked to stand, the youngest generation asked to stand was still older than me. I guess I'm one of the babies of the group. Other major areas of the speech covered perceptions of what is healthy, what types of tea people prefer to buy, how often they buy tea and other products, and how the internet and other technologies play roles in people's purchasing habits and styles.

After the keynote address was over, I was welcomed into a really cool place called 11:11 Teahouse with one of the other "babies" of the conference, Christine Rillo of Adagio Tea. I was thrilled to meet the owner, Penney Sue Balmes, a strong and intelligent entrepreneur just a bit older than myself. She serves and sells a wide array of tisanes, which was of particular interest to me because I am working on a series of articles about tisanes right now. The place is very laid-back and the tisanes and food are phenomenal. I hope to return the next time I head down South!

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