Date of Defense

4-18-2017

Date of Graduation

4-2017

Department

Economics

First Advisor

Michael Ryan

Second Advisor

Christine Moser

Third Advisor

Gregory Veeck

Abstract

Tea is the second most popular beverage in the world, and over the past two decades it has experienced a newfound popularity in the United States. Over this time period, ready-to-drink and loose-leaf tea has increased in popularity, whereas tea bags and instant tea declined in popularity. Since the United States produces almost no tea itself, an increase in consumption requires increased imports. Therefore, this paper examines U.S. import trends as a means to begin an examination of consumption. Ten countries (Argentina, Canada, China, Germany, India, Japan, Kenya, Sri Lanka, the United Kingdom, and Vietnam) provide approximately 80% of the U.S.’s tea imports. This paper examines changing trends in source locations, net weight, and price levels in both black and green tea. In total, my analysis reveals some surprising revelations about the location of the U.S. tea supply, the comparative growth between weight imported and price levels, and implications about multiple aspects of consumption claims.

Access Setting

Honors Thesis-Open Access