Coffee capsule inventor aims for Asia with tea
The inventor of one of the world's most successful coffee capsule machines, Eric Favre, wants to take on the Asian market with a similar system for tea, his spokesman said on Thursday.
Favre, who is credited with inventing the "Nespresso" system launched by food giant Nestle 25 years ago before he left in 1990, will unveil his new "Tpresso" system in Beijing next Wednesday.
The head of Swiss firm Monodor "has been working for 30 years on tea" and a capsule concept, the spokesman said. He added that Favre was counting mainly on the demanding Asian market to launch the product.
Capsule systems rely on the combination of pre-packaged single doses of coffee and a proprietary machine similar to espresso machines. Some brands, including those produced by Favre's firm, also offer tea in capsules.
Swiss newspaper Le Matin reported last year that the company was testing a specialised machine in Shanghai with the help of a local tea producer.
Monodor produces some 500 million coffee capsules a year for several other food or coffee companies.
Rival Nestle's sales of its own brand and system alone totalled some three billion Swiss francs (2.7 billion dollars, 2.2 billion euros) in the first half of 2010 alone.
© 2011 AFP