We purchase 100% of our tea leaves directly from producers. We seek out small and medium-sized, fully-integrated operations who grow and produce their teas on-site (even in Japan). This compares with many "mixed" operations who buy tea leaves from groups of farmers and produce blended product.
We've built this intimate supply chain over nearly a decade. In many cases, our teas are co-developed in partnership with the farm. In others, our investments into farms have allowed us to improve production capabilities and even sponsor organic certification.
Tea is complex. There are hundreds of styles, produced over thousands of years of history—with cultivation now spanning the globe. Our work as modern importers is to understand and simplify this multiplex industry for tea drinkers everywhere.
This complexity is often used as a veil to confuse (intentionally or not) tea buyers and drinkers. It's easy for a tea company to hide behind exotic-sounding language in lieu of providing genuinely informative content. Hugo Tea was founded as an alternative to that culture. A truly masterful tea practice is based on objective, clear information.