January 8, 2013

TAZO Tea Rebrand and the Minor Mental Breakdown

While away on holiday in central Washington, I was at a grocery store with my mom cruising the aisle for new interesting packaging. In San Francisco, the options are limited because stores are so much smaller so it's hardly ever stocked with new gems. As we wondering through the tea section, I noticed in the TAZO section new, awful packaging for only the Earl Grey tea. What follows is my inner monologue for the next 15-23 seconds after seeing the terrible new branding:

Panic. Oh no, they have done a terrible, terrible "yoga modern" rebrand. Shit, shit, shit. Think, think, think. Maybe it's just this one package. They wouldn't do this to me. They understand how much beautiful color-coordinated packaging means to me, right? Right?! Shit. Fuck. They are really doing this. What do I do? What do I do? What if all the tea in San Francisco has already turned yoga mod? This might be your last chance to purchase the good packaging before it's gone. Gone forever. Quick load them all in the cart. I'm Noah, and this cart is my Arc! Quick, everyone on the arc, except you Earl Grey. It's too late for your Earl Grey; you've already turned. Wait, how will you explain all that tea to your family? Maybe it's just better if you get one box. Let's not let anyone know exactly how crazy you are about color-coordinated teas. Yes. Okay, just act cool. Just grab your favorite flav... damn you Earl Grey. Okay, just pick the prettiest colored box. Oooohh! Berry Blossom White. You love that. Remember how much you love that light blue box? Okay, act casual. Pick up the box. Inspect it like you're looking at it for the first time. Say "hmmmm" like this tea is quite an interesting find. Toss the last of its beautiful kind into the cart. Gently though. That could be the last one ever made.

Now a week after my mini supermarket mental breakdown, my speculation have been confirmed. My beautiful TAZO packaging is slowly dying a transitional death. The nail on the coffin comes this morning when Brand New posted about the re-brand. While I can say I do like the new logo, I love nothing about the packaging.

Photo: Brand New

Photo: Brand New

Isn't it great that the new packaging lets you know you can drink breakfast tea at any time of day?! Thanks for opening up the possibilities for what I was only reserving for before 11:59am. And oh my gowsh, tea is made of leaves? Who'da thunk it? Now I want to drink it, and lots of it.

Look what TAZO (or should I say Starbucks as of 1999) has done to me. All I have left are sarcasm and a flattened Berry Blossom box that now hangs on my design wall as an obituary to the old goodness that once was TAZO.