INNOVATION On her latest trip home, the Los Angeles based actress and television presenter came across the Ti Ora range of teas and, after finding out she was a fan, the Auckland-based company jumped at the chance to host her at their factory and secure her as a tea ambassador. During the one-on-one tasting of the five new flavours from Ti Ora, Hunter revealed that she loves tea. “When life is busy, finding moments to relax is really important and having a cup of tea is a great way to do that,” the 47-year-old says. Ti Ora – headed by New Zealand’s only Master Tea Taster Matt Greenwood – is blended and packed in New Zealand using premium teas, fruits and herbs from native New Zealand botanicals. First launched last year, the company’s vision is to bring a distinctive freshness and excitement to the tea category. “Native botanicals have been used in New Zealand for centuries to support wellbeing,” the company says. “We have sourced Kawakawa and Manuka leaf, both used traditionally for their herbal properties, from the East Cape of New Zealand.” The five new flavours – lemon and honey camomile with Manuka leaf; peach and passionfruit green tea with Kawakawa; cinnamon chai tea with Horopito; spiced apple and rhubarb fruit tea with Manuka leaf; and strawberry and pomegranate green tea for Kawakawa – delighted Hunter. “All of the flavours were really fragrant and the beauty of these types of teas is that there is a blend for all tastes. I couldn’t tell you which was my favourite,” the host of Tour of Beauty says. “I particularly loved the beautiful inclusion of native New Zealand botanicals such as Manuka leaf, Kawakawa and Horopito – it makes this range very uniquely Kiwi and it’s like a little taste of home for me.” With Greenwood at Ti Ora is tea and coffee sourcing and quality programmer Stu Hargie, who is also a world sensory judge; and tea and coffee specialist and sensory judge Alla Heta, who has a particular passion for bringing together the best ingredients – including hand-selected native New Zealand botanicals – to blend delicate teas that offer wellbeing. Hunter’s second season of her successful Tour of Beauty series is currently showing on TVNZ, and will be sold into more than 150 countries. This time, her global search for secrets to lasting beauty and wellbeing will continue through the Americas from Machu Picchu in Peru, to the body-conscious beaches of Miami, a Rastafari village in the heart of Jamaica to the fashion capital of New York City. www.foodtechnology.co.nz 5 When a supermarket visit in Auckland led to the discovery of a new range of New Zealand tea, former supermodel and one of the most recognisable Kiwis in the world Rachel Hunter’s interest was piqued.
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