World Tea News reported that on Jan 12 Starbucks officially announced that they would be replacing it’s current line of Tazo teas with a whole-leaf version.
Starbucks will now carry a total of 10 whole leaf teas; adding a Vanilla Rooibos herbal tea and an Orange Blossom Green Tea to their current selection of teas. The new whole-leaf teas will be packaged in a three-dimensional sachet to allow more room for tea movement during steeping.
The driving factor behind this as stated by Starbucks is that they want to bring a whole-leaf tea experience to their customers to compliment their quality coffee experience. Along with these changes, the company has introduced new training for their baristas including sourcing and steeping information, however, it does not appear that this will include temperature changes and will largely leave steep times up to the consumer.
I think that bringing better tea to the masses is always a step in the right direction, and am glad to see Starbucks make this change.