Tell us about your business: What do you do? What did inspire you to start?
We are Stir and Sip, a non profit company selling ‘loose leaf and fancy tea’. We set up in response to the need for funding for homeless charities, namely SCT (Spitalfields Crypt Trust) who do a fantastic job helping homeless people through a recovery program and back into work.
We sell loose leaf tea for a profit, to generate the income for the tea that is given away for free at the drop in centre. Tea is often at the very start of the recovery process, and can also be the only non alcoholic drink that some of the guys have that day.
To be able to generate funds for tea, through selling tea is our aim. Our tea is supplied by a company from a tea growing region in Darjeeling India, they are expert in their field and have helped us put together a fantastic selection of tea.
We are the only 100% not for profit tea seller in the market at the moment, but also we felt it was very important to have our own unique blend, so we took the unusual step of having a tea made for us by our tea experts. This has led to us launching a tea called ‘East End Blend’ which is our flagship signature tea.
We wanted it to represent all that is good about the East End so it’s a very strong tea with a big character. We package the tea into tobacco tins to encourage drinkers to take it out and about, and not to leave it sitting in a cupboard.
Why did you choose Shoreditch to start this business?
We are launching the blend through Paper and Cup which is on Calvert Avenue, and it is such a vibrant part of the East End it seemed like the perfect place to start.
What is your favorite Businesses in Shoreditch?
It has to be Paper & Cup!
What does the future has in store for your business?
We are excited to get some momentum over the coming months and build up a regular client base for the tea. We are ideally going to get into more retail outlets, both as resellers, stockists and wholesale so we will be pushing that over the coming weeks.
One other thing we will be doing is Recovery Starts With a Tea (Party) where we will hold tasting parties for customers to try before they buy – watch this space on that development!