Out on Wadmalaw Island is the Charleston Tea Plantation.
It’s a large commercial operation, and one that’s fun to visit if you want to see the entire tea making process but don’t have the time to make it out to Taiwan or Yunnan (and hopefully we’ll get to India this year).
They’ve been growing tea on this land since the 1960s…
…and it used to be the R&D grounds for Lipton! How neat is that?
Bill bought the land from Lipton in the 1980s…
…and in 2003, the Bigelow’s bought the land, which they now own/operate with Bill. The tea produced today (all flavored black teas) are sold under the American Classic Tea brand.
Bill took us on a ride around the plantation which covers 127 acres. Compare this with the family farms on Hawaii here and here.
Hawaii and South Carolina are the two main places in the US that consistently produce. Some people are starting to grow in Oregon and Washington…will be interesting to see how that develops over the next decade or so ^-^