Bissap Breeze began as one couple’s social entrepreneurship project—a way to improve their own diets, while also introducing a healthy product for others to enjoy and making money.
“We wanted to grow a viable family business that could also help support the cultural arts communities from which we came,” says owners Tyrone Henry and Esailama Henry, Ph.D. He is a native New Orleanian, a musician and kemetic yoga instructor. Esailama, who is from Oakland, Calif., is a dancer and lecturer.
“As a newly married couple, we began to explore projects we could do together and ways to improve our diet and overall health as a family,” says Esailama Henry. “In our travels as performing artists we both were introduced to the Roselle hibiscus and its medicinal benefits. While incorporating hibiscus tea into our daily diet we also began to play with and create our own hibiscus beverage recipes.”
Tyrone Henry developed the final recipe and the couple shared their homemade beverages with friends that encouraged them to bottle and sell it. This is where the journey of Bissap Breeze began. Bissap Breeze iced teas are made with real premium brewed hibiscus flowers, organic juice and all natural juices and extracts – with no artificial colors, flavors or preservatives. There are six flavor blends: Hibiscus-Ginger Zing, Hibiscus-Green Tea, Hibiscus-Lemonade, Hibiscus-Mint, Hibiscus-Pomegranate, and Hibiscus Unsweetened.
While Tyrone has been developing and selling beverages, tonics, hot sauces and culinary recipes for over 15 years, Bissap Breeze was incorporated in 2011. Business support has came from the Goodwork Network, The Urban League of Greater New Orleans, NewCorp, Idea Village and the ASI Federal Credit Union.
“All these organizations helped us grow,” Esailama says.
Bissap Breeze’s current beverage lines include a concentrate and ready-to-drink iced tea blends. The Bissap Breeze Concentrate is a distinctive beverage concentrate that can be enjoyed as a spritzer, iced tea and cocktail mixer or added to creative recipes.
Bissap Breeze products can be purchased at any Rouses location, Circle Food Store, New Orleans Food Co-op Black Star Café, and Whole Foods. For more information, visit www.bissaphbreeze.com.