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Put on a hair and beard net and be prepared to give your nose a sensation of a lifetime. Celestial Seasonings’ main factory is right here in Boulder, and it gives free tours seven days a week. But can a tour about tea be fun?
Located at 4600 Sleepytime Drive, Celestial Seasonings’ factory is in the middle of Boulder’s suburbia. According to its Web site, the factory started in 1969 and all their products are made from herbs straight from the Rocky Mountains. Celestial Seasonings is now the biggest specialty tea manufacturer in North America, according to its Web site.
The tour shows how the tea is bagged, packaged and stored. The factory’s ambience is that of Santa’s workshop—full of conveyor belts and exotic-looking machines. The signs are bright and seasonal and its charm adds a little mystery to tea.
Luisa Schrichte, a 21-year-old senior marketing and economics major, said she went because she was curious to see how they make tea.
“There is a lot that goes on behind the scenes and you get to see all the different types of teas,” Schrichte said.
Caroline Marshall, a 19-year-old freshman environmental studies major, said she likes Celestial Seasonings’ chai tea and decided to check out the factory.
“I’m a fan of tea and wanted to see how they would keep it in large quantities,” Marshall said.
Most of the site is needed for storing the different spices used in the teas, imported from 35 countries around the world. Production lines package and ship the tea, and each day they send out three different teas.
The most famous part of Celestial Seasonings is the mint room, where peppermint and spearmint are stored. Mints are stored separately to prevent them tainting the other spices. The room is so potent that the tour guide describes it from the outside of the room because many people are unable to take the overwhelming smell of mint for very long.
Dora Panyi, a 19-year-old freshman psychology major, said she enjoyed the tour.
“I loved the peppermint room,” Panyi said. “I was sick when I went and as soon as I walked in it cleared all my senses.”
Both Marshall and Schrichte said they are tea lovers, but had conflicting views on the tour.
“I recommend that if you are a fan of tea you should go, but if you’re not, it wasn’t that exciting; it wouldn’t have interested me,” Marshall said.
“It was so different from other tours, it really awakened your senses,” Schrichte said. “It’s really cool to have something like that in Colorado.”
Contact CU Independent Staff Writer Brigid Igoe at Brigid.firstname.lastname@example.org.