NCET helps you explore business and technology
By Dave Archer
When you sip a cup of Davidson’s Organics tea, you’re also supporting a local organization that reaches around the globe.
“We’re probably the largest vertically integrated organic tea company in the U.S.,” said Kunall Patel, co-owner of the Sparks-based company. “We have traceability truly from farm to cup.”
For more than 40 years, Davidson’s has been developing its relationships with tea producers in India. Every tea, every spice and every herb used in any of Davidson’s blend comes from small tea producers or small, disenfranchised farmers throughout the world.
More than 500 globally-grown ingredients then come to Davidson’s new, 50,000-square-foot facility in Sparks. That warehouse is where Davidson’s creates more than 300-plus finished tea blends.
“That’s where we do all the formulation, blending, manufacturing, and distribution of teas, not just for our brand, but for other national brands as well,” Patel added.
The company doubled its warehouse space with the move about three months ago, Patel said.
“It makes logistics of ingredients storage and packaging storage more streamlined,” he said. “It allowed us to expand capacity, whereby we could add and purchase new machines, and also yield more finished products out of our facility. It also allows us to hire more people and grow as a company to support that expansion plans that we have in place.”
In the Reno-Sparks area, the company employs about 50 people. Davidson’s also has 5,000 small farmer workers in India.
The company recently became SQF Level Two certified, which is a high level of food safety certification in a food manufacturing environment.
In addition to the move and that achievement, Davidson’s also released two new lines of tea. Its seven functional teas were created with Ayurvedic practitioners, and include blends to promote sleep, energy, digestion, and help with other health issues.
The idea for Davidson’s “The Handshake” tea blend was brewed up right in Reno with local mixologist, Michael Moberly. The blend of organic yerba mate leaf, green tea leaf, ashwagandha root, guayusa leaf, spearmint leaf, gotu kola leaf, and licorice root creates balanced energy and recovery for service industry professionals who spend most of their days on foot.
The art of making tea is core to the company’s mission and identity, Patel said.
“You don’t learn that in school,” he said. “You have to experience it. You have to go through a grass root effort to understand how to create a palate to appreciate each specific ingredient.”
Learn how a cup of Davidson’s Organics tea makes its way from an organic tea garden in the Himalayas to the company’s new headquarters in Sparks during NCET’s Tech Wednesday event from 5:30–7:30 p.m. on May 8 at 665 Spice Island Drive in Sparks. For more information and to purchase registration, visit NCETwed.org.
Dave Archer is president/CEO of NCET, which produces educational and networking events to help people explore business and technology.