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Starbucks breaking out from coffee, set to open Tazo Tea shops

Starbucks, the world’s largest coffee-shop operator, will open its first tea-only store in October.

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Customers queue for coffee at a Starbucks inside the Dulles International Airport complex on August 30, 2011 in Dulles, Virginia, near Washington, DC. (PAUL J. RICHARDS/AFP/Getty Images)

Starbucks, the world’s largest coffee-shop operator, will open its first tea-only store in October, Bloomberg reported. 

The tea stores will be under the Tazo Tea brand and will sell over 80 varieties of loose-leaf tea. 

“We see Tazo as fitting into our emerging brands portfolio. We see it as a huge potential and a multi-channel opportunity," Holly Hart, a spokeswoman for Seattle-based Starbucks, told Bloomberg. 

Reuters reported that Starbucks originally bought the Tazo brand in 1999. Starbucks also reported that Tazo is now a $1.4 billion brand for the company, which sells Tazo products through its own shops and the grocery aisles of many retailers.

More from GlobalPost: Starbucks quarterly sales disappoint, shares fall sharply

This isn't Starbucks first attempt at branching out. In January the company announced that they would begin test-marketing alcohol in select stores. At the same time they also announced they would be rolling out a premium food menu including flat bread pizzas and savory snacks to help make people come back long after breakfast. 

The Seattle Times also reported that with the tea launch, Starbucks will also be introducing a single-serve coffee machine for home use to the market. 

Reuters reported that tea is a $95 billion global market and represents a, "significant opportunity" for the company. 

http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/business/120620/starbucks-breaking-out-coffee-set-open-tazo-tea-shops