Apprentices find tea and some sympathy…
THOSE who sat down with a cuppa to watch last week’s episode of The Apprentice may have spotted an Ashford tea company making an appearance.
The Kent Tea and Trading Company, based in Pivington Mill, Pluckley, featured on The Apprentice last Wednesday.
Contestants from the business challenge show, fronted by Sir Alan Sugar, descended on the small factory shop in October, to buy traditional tea for their latest challenge, which was to sell quality British products in France.
The family-run company, which has Liberty of London among its clients, sells more than 150 varieties of tea including herbal, green and spicy.
Owner Richard Smith said: “An entourage of trucks, crew and trailers arrived and they filmed for about an hour.
“We were told by one of Alan Sugar’s sidekicks not to give them any advice, although when no one was looking, I did suggest marmalade would do well!
“I thought they were going to be in business suits and quite aggressive, but they were as mild and meek as anything, very different to the characters you see on TV.”
After browsing through the shelves stacked with the weird and wonderful of the tea world, the team left with £150 worth of Pluckley Tea and English Breakfast gift packs.
While they won the task, it was the tea which failed to tempt the coffee-drinking French in Arras, where Apprentice teams set up stalls in a market.
“The English like strong tea but the French are more into fruity and delicate flavours,” said Mr Smith.
Sir Alan Sugar and, left, Richard with some Pluckley Tea