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In The Media

NC IDEA MICRO Grant winner and tea innovator Embrew launches brand new packaging and showcases co-branded blend “Strawberry Yaupon Hops” with supplier Yaupon Brothers American Tea Co.

Sept 21, 2023

After taking home one of the highly competitive grant awards from the NC IDEA foundation last October, Embrew Tea revamped their packaging for their lightly sweetened, premium tea bags to be better suited for retail shelves. The new packaging line for the growing tea business included a co-branding effort with supplier Yaupon Brothers American Tea Co, which is leading the resurgence of American-grown yaupon tea.

The popular blend, Strawberry Yaupon Hops, includes the trending superfood yaupon holly tea, which was named the the number one top ten food trend for 2023 by Whole Foods Markets and named Best New Tea by Men’s Health Magazine.

The blend highlights the smooth characteristics of green yaupon, calming properties of cascade hops, and sweetness of strawberries with a touch of organic cane sugar giving the drinker energy without the jitters of a typical green tea.

The new line of packaging debuted at the Summer Atlanta Gift Market and was received with overwhelming interest from boutique gift store buyers. The new boxes are now shipping to retailers in time for the cool-weather of fall when consumption of hot tea begins to ramp up in the US and before the holiday season.

After searching for a sweetened tea bag years ago, founder Ashley Haywood began blending gourmet teas and unique specialty sweeteners together so that each tea bag could brew a perfectly balanced cup of premium hot tea without cumbersome infusers or a honey jar. The most popular Embrew flavors like Lavender Chamomile Kick and Bourbon Smoked White have paved the way for this unique blend using wild-crafted organic yaupon, strawberries and hops.

Three boxes of Embrew tea on a glass coffee table

The Yaupon Holly tree is the only caffeinated plant native to the US and was first discovered and brewed into tea by the Ais and Timucua tribes. This hardy, drought and heat-tolerant plant grows from Virginia, down to Florida and across to Texas. It contains roughly the same amount of caffeine as green tea, but creates a non-jittery energy like yerba mate since Yaupon leaves contain theobromine, which is the pleasure molecule found in chocolate.

You can find the Strawberry Yaupon Hops blend and the whole line of lightly sweetened tea bags in their brand new packaging online at, in-stores around Asheville, NC, and now in more than 8 states throughout the southeast and mid-Atlantic regions.

About Embrew
Embrew has created the world’s first naturally sweetened artisan tea bags filled with innovative blends that guarantee a superior cup of tea without a cumbersome infuser set up. Female-founder, Ashley Haywood, has perfected the sweetness and flavor for each brew through extensive recipe exploration and ingredient sourcing. As a result, there's no question of should I use coconut sugar or maple, or having to wait for-freaking-ever for the crystalized honey to come out. When she realized she had created time itself – literal minutes – she had to share it with tea people everywhere.

About Yaupon Brothers
Yaupon Brothers American Tea Company was founded in 2015 by two brothers, Bryon and Kyle White and former mentor-turned-business-partner, Mark Steele. Our Yaupon teas are a true labor of love. Each leaf is hand-plucked, carefully dried or fire-roasted, graded and milled, and hand-packed in our facility in Edgewater, Florida. We don't outsource any aspect of production, because we won't compromise on quality. Yaupon Brothers has a policy of transparency, because we're proud of our craft and we want to share it with the world. Quality combines with nature's special touch in East Central Florida, where Yaupon trees are ancient and very special.

Article featured in WNC Business Magazine as well.


ABC 13 Asheville Covers Venture Asheville Investomercial Event — Featuring Embrew Tea

June 5, 2023

Local Asheville TV affiliate, ABC 13 News, highlighted the fast-paced, Shark Tank meets QVC pitch day aptly named the Venture Asheville Investomercial event.  Embrew Tea was one of five local entrepreneurs presenting their best pitch to help raise funds, find co-founders, or simply educate the area on their high growth trajectory.



WNC Business Magazine Features Ashley Haywood to Discuss Entrepreneurial Support Within The Community of Craft Beverage

May 20, 2023

Founder and owner of Embrew Tea, Ashley Haywood, highlights the instrumental role of WNC's supportive community in facilitating the growth of craft beverage companies such as Embrew.

Ashley shares how WNC businesses assist others in achieving success. She also discusses the innovative approaches adopted by craft beverage companies, including Embrew, in diversifying their beverage offerings, which complement the offerings of craft breweries in the region.

Read more here (click to zoom in):


Embrew Tea Interview in WNC Magazine



Talking 'Ship Podcast -Talking with Embrew Tea Founder Ashley Haywood

May 11, 2023 SEASON 3 EPISODE 9

Join us for a fun conversation with Ashley Haywood, the Founder of Embrew Tea, where we find out how she makes sure you can re-steep their tea bags.

In this podcast, Jeff talks with Ashley about how they order the same dish where ever they go, her fun early career beginnings, the twists and turns through Costa Rica, online poker, home shopping, and of course where this has all led with Embrew Tea and how she's learning that #solopreneurship is a total myth.

You can listen to the podcast on Spotify, Amazon Music, or simply click here to listen on Venture Asheville. 

 Talking ‘Ship Podcast - Screenshot


CBS 17 My Carolina Features Embrew Tea on Their "Mothers Day Gift Ideas" From Dawn's Corner Series

May 1st, 2023

CBS 17 Carolinas showcased Embrew Tea on the 9am show with Shop Dawns Corner alongside a group of other products for Mother's Day. Dawn kicked off the segment with Embrew, since it is a women-owned, ethically-sourced, innovative tea brand, and a great way for Mom to kick off Mother’s Day-since a mom created it. Embrew's high-end, lightly-sweetened, loose-leaf grade tea bags make your tea time (and me time) easy and inspiring without the hassle of an infuser or sticky honey

Dawn's favorite is the Lavender Chamomile Kick (of course, it's our best-seller!) which goes perfectly in the sweet gift sets you can find on our website.


Embrew Exhibits at the Winter Fancy Food Show

February 1st, 2023

After being awarded the NC IDEA MICRO grant in October, Embrew funded a trip to Vegas to exhibit for the first time at a retail buyer show—Winter Fancy Food Show. As a new product in the Start-up Pavilion, we received a lot of attention from the Specialty Food Association and were profiled in multiple media throughout the event. 
The local newspaper—The Fairview Town Crier—in our new Asheville area hometown, created a photo journal log of the event so readers could follow along in the experience. While they couldn't taste the amazing food from the show, they saw all the fun we had.
Read more here (click to zoom in):
Embrew tea featured in the Fairview Town Crier following our trip to the Winter Fancy Food Show

Fox 13 Features Embrew Tea on Their "Made In Tampa Bay" Series

December 4th, 2021

Photojournalist Corey Beckman interviews Embrew Founder and CEO, Ashley Haywood in the news segment created to give viewers an inside look at small businesses in and around the Tampa Bay area. This two minute story unlocks the reason behind the creation of sweetened tea bags, the careful sourcing of ingredients, and the behind-the-scenes building of Embrew teas.

Intuit QuickBooks Small Business Holiday Shopping Guide Features Embrew Tea

October 28th, 2021

QuickBooks is making it easier to shop small this holiday season with a curated small business guide to help thoughtful consumers find creative holiday gifts while supporting small businesses around the country.

We are honored to be featured by a great company who has helped me get my bookkeeping under wraps for the past year when I finally got on board.
Quickbooks Small Business Gift Guide featuring Embrew Tea

Embrew is Featured on The Hustleburg podcast

May 27th, 2021

Who is our customer and what do they like? Ashley dives into some great questions from podcast host Brett Bittner from Beyond Your Side Hustle in this episode. You might be surprised at the biggest lesson Ashley has learned throughout the years of creating the world's first ethically-sourced, lightly-sweetened, eco-friendly teas in single-serve tea bags. Come along for the ride and learn more about her experience with public speaking in Toastmasters clubs and what the catalyst was when she finally decided to go for it, and bring these sweetened tea bags into the world for all of us.


Ashley Haywood Embrew featured on Hustleburg Podcast with host Brett Bittner


Embrew is Featured on St Petersburg Foodies podcast

March 2nd, 2021

From loving things that are easy, to living in Costa Rica, working for IRONMAN and the online poker industry, this podcast episode dives deep into the Embrew backstory with Kevin Godbee and Lori Brown, the hosts and creators behind St Petersburg Foodies podcast, website, social sites as they interview founder, Ashley Haywood. 


Learn what oxidation does in the process of making tea, how cumbersome the tea supply chain actually is and how to properly brew green tea.


St Petersburg Foodies website header
St Petersburg Foodies Ashley Haywood

Localtopia St Pete is a Success for Small Businesses

February 20th, 2021

We all remember our firsts. First pet, first car, first kid, first kiss, first time we had se....seconds of dessert and regretted it (shame on you).

Localtopia St Pete holds a very special first for our founder. Her first event as a business, her first tea sale, Embrew's first customer. This event is a representation of all the amazing things about St Pete; the small businesses, the art, the food. It's always a gem of a day and ran from 10-5pm in Williams Park.

The local Fox affiliate ran a story on the event and showcased Embrew as a featured vendor at the event. See the full article coverage here.


Embrew Wins St Pete Pitch Night

October 22nd, 2020

It was an amazing experience to pitch for $5,000 in seed money at St Pete Pitch Night. The other 4 start-ups are fantastic and will continue to be very successful. It was an honor to pitch alongside them and I can't thank The Greenhouse enough for the opportunity to participate and the judges who believed in me enough to score my pitch above the others. This money will be able to help pay for the new packaging for Embrew that will make our products shelf-ready for retailers.

Excerpt from the article:

The [St Pete Pitch Night] event, which focuses on showcasing, elevating and seeding community-based businesses, featured presentations from five local entrepreneurs seeking funding to help grow their companies.

“St. Petersburg is a city that celebrates small businesses,” said Mayor Rick Kriseman before announcing Embrew as the winner. “We really recognize the important role small businesses and entrepreneurs play in our community, and it’s what sets us apart from so many other cities.”

A St. Petes Catalyst news article highlighting Embrew's success at St. Pete Pitch Night.


Founder Interview on The Morning Blend Tampa Bay

July 2nd, 2020

It was an exciting day when our founder, Ashley Haywood, was interviewed on Tampa Bay's Morning Blend - broadcast on ABC Action News, where she was able to tell the locals about her unique tea that is made right in St Petersburg, Florida. Watch the segment below to hear about how it all started, the evolution of the business and what the most popular flavors are.