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Oprah and Starbucks Partner on Chai Tea Drink to Benefit Education

By Nick Sanchez   |   Thursday, 20 Mar 2014 08:04 AM

Global media leader and philanthropist Oprah Winfrey is teaming up with Starbucks and unveiled her own signature chai tea blend alongside Howard Schultz, CEO of Starbucks, at the company's shareholder meeting Wednesday.

According to a press release from the company, beginning April 29, Teavana Oprah Chai Tea will be sold in Starbucks and Teavana stores across the U.S. and Canada, with Starbucks donating to the Oprah Winfrey Leadership Academy Foundation to provide more educational opportunities for youth.

"My daily tea ritual is a vital part of my morning. Savory and spicy chai, with its deep flavor, has long been a favorite of mine," the media mogul said in a statement. "When Howard Schultz offered to have me come into the Starbucks tasting room and create my very own tea blend, I thought that sounded like such a unique opportunity and fun to the tenth power."

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In a video of Winfrey's recent trip to the Seattle headquarters, she admits to having been a little nervous about striking just the right blend.

"I woke up at 2:16 this morning thinking about choosing the best tea that would satisfy me and also satisfy all of our customers," she says. "I like things really spicy. I like things chai'd up."

The donation aspect of the new venture will benefit girls and young women in South Africa and help them to attend college. During a visit with Nelson Mandela in 2000, Winfrey promised her friend she would build a school in the previously war-torn country. She kept her promise, and opened the Oprah Winfrey Leadership Academy for Girls – South Africa in 2007.

The foundation also supports additional youth education through Girls Inc., National CARES Mentoring Movement, Pathways to College, and the U.S. Dream Academy.

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