Agri-tourism, as mentioned in our post from a few weeks back, simply gives farmers and growers the opportunity to boost their lands income. While we encourage tea growers across the country to wrap their arms around the concept, there are growers in Hawaii that are putting the concept into action. I spoke with Eva Lee, Founder of Tea Hawaii & Company and Director of The Community Cup about their upcoming tea tour. Eva has an extensive history in growing and processing tea, and is a modern pioneer in the growth of tea on the Hawaiian Islands. “When we first got into growing tea, because it was so unknown, we didn’t plan on having “tea tours”, says Eva. “We have participated in agri-tourism for about 5 years on a less formal basis than this tour in November.”
The Community Cup Tea Tour, to be held November 4-6, 2013, will take place on the Big Island of Hawaii. The tour, led by Eva Lee and a handful of other growers, specialists and educators, boasts lodging at a National Park (to give people a feel for the terroir), a history of tea in the Pacific Rim, multiple tea farm tours and meet and greets with the growers, education on the propagation and cultivation of tea, a glimpse into the local tea inspired artistry, and an opportunity to see how tea is being produced in Hawaii. There will be a special demonstration with Chef Raul showing the versatility and the culinary aspects of tea. There will be an opportunity for the attendees to be hands on with the harvesting and processing of tea leaves as well.
There are so many directions that one could go with the Agri-Tourism idea. We’ve got Hawaii doing specialized Tea Tours and a Mississippi tea farm participating in a multi-business, 100+ mile trail tour. What else are our incredible US Tea Growers doing when it comes to Agri-Tourism?