Steven Smith, co-founder of several tea brands including Tazo and Stash, passed away in late March due to health issues stemming from liver cancer. He was 65.

Smith served in the U.S. Navy during the Vietnam War, and came to the tea industry after returning home in 1971. He invented Tazo’s Awake and Zen tea blends. “Steve was truly one of the most remarkable, passionate, compassionate, and genuine people I’ve ever met in the herb community,” said Mark Blumenthal, founder and executive director of the American Botanical Council. “He was a good friend and great supporter of ABC’s nonprofit educational mission. All of us in the herb community have lost a true friend and brilliant champion for tea and many other herbs.”

Published in WholeFoods Magazine, May 2015