Floating Leaves Tea will be setting up a new website, and a second shipping center in Taiwan!!
What this means is a lot of our oolongs will be shipped out of Taiwan, including the new season of high mountain oolong and Baozhong.
When we started to work on this idea it was really scary. This is a huge change and change brings out a lot of fear. But we asked ourselves what we really want from this tea business, and the answer is to learn from the source.
Taking the answer to this question as a core guiding principle, we’ve been able to bring out more clarity. It gives us courage to deal with the change, the risk of making the change. We realized we CAN NOT risk losing the opportunity to learn from our teachers in Taiwan, and the hard truth is that they are getting older. So why wait! Now Noah has gotten a business visa, and he’ll be setting off to Taiwan in early April!
There will be two websites, the original site (floatingleaves.com) will exclusively ship out of Taiwan. Shipping will be available to the US of course, but we will also be able to offer international shipping around the world!
There will be a new US version of the site (floatingleaves.us) which will continue shipping a smaller selection of teas from our Seattle location.
Since we will be in Taiwan more often, we will be able to keep a more interesting, evolving list of teas available, source more teaware directly from the makers and produce more content directly from Taiwan!
Don’t worry! We will still have a presence in Seattle. Once it seems safe, we will slowly start offering tea tastings again, too. To do this Shiuwen and Noah will trade off traveling to Taiwan to spend time sourcing, learning and producing content.
The People That Made This Possible
There will also be a new member of the FL team to help us organize buying, storing and shipping tea from Taiwan.
Sunny and Shiuwen have known each other since we were 16. In the past, we have either met in Taiwan or Seattle. Even though our meetings have been always short, but we have kept our friendship. It was sweet watching how our lives unfold and our kids growing big.
The past year, due to pandemic, I have not been able to go back to Taiwan. First it started with Sunny sending us some treats from Taiwan because we have missed them so much. Then she started to help us by making sure some vendors were getting paid and the goods were shipped out to Seattle. From this process, she got more and more involved with tea and grew more and more interested in tea. One time I messaged her to thank her for helping me and joked with her if she would like to be involved in a tea business, she messaged me back with a big YES!
This past few months Sunny has shown her capacity of learning. She is smart and hard working! It warms my heart when I look at our friendship together and I would have not known that our path will intertwine like this. We will grow together on a tea journey!
We’ve been working around the clock for the past month or so getting all of this set up, packing tea orders at the shop during the day and meeting with people in Taiwan during the night. In the process, we had a lot of questions that needed to be answered before we could go about shipping tea out of Taiwan.
Thanks to Andy from EcoCha, we were able to get a lot of good information! Andy is a badass and has been shipping tea from Taiwan directly to customers for years. He was so generous to help us figure out what needed to be done to set up a fulfillment center in Taiwan. So we just want to take the time to shout him out. If you haven’t tried Eco Cha’s teas yet, you should go check out his website! www.eco-cha.com
On top of all that, we're starting a sale tomorrow (Tuesday) running through Friday at midnight. It's going to be the biggest sale we've had so far, 30% off most teas (and 15% off Special Reserve Teas).
We are doing the sale to free up some funds to help us purchase new inventory for the new branch of Floating Leaves Tea. So get your carts ready now, and come back tomorrow to press the 'buy' button!
With the Deepest Gratitude
During this pandemic, we have been so scared to lose the business. And you showed us the support to keep us afloat. With this big change ahead of us, we are scared too. However, in the bottom of my heart, I know once again you have my back. During this trying and challenging time, supports from all parts, you the wonderful customers, friends/family, tea colleagues, teachers, and farmers, have kept us going. We are excited with this big change and we will love to continue to share our tea journey with you.
Shiuwen, Noah & Sunny
Floating Leaves Tea