Frequently asked questions

What is guayusa?

We believe guayusa is an incredibly special plant. It makes the most delicious tea we've ever tasted. We've tried to answer some of the questions that people have about guayusa.

Guayusa is a shade-grown caffeinated Amazonian holly leaf. It has a unique and clean flavour. It is high in antioxidants and vitamins and has been drunk for thousands of years by indigenous Amazonian people. A stash of guayusa leaves was found in an ancient tomb in Bolivia that was 1500 years old. You can learn more about guayusa here.

Is guayusa a good alternative to coffee?

Many believe it's a much healthier alternative to coffee. While it contains caffeine, it is so much more easy on the system.

Is guayusa a good way to give up coffee?

While it obviously still contains caffeine, we have personally found that since discovering guayusa we've hardly drunk any coffee at all - and we were big, strong coffee drinkers. Guayusa is so much easier on the system, and feels packed with goodness. You still get all the alertness you'd seek from a cup of normal coffee, but it's a much more subtle and drawn out energy. It lasts a long time and rises and leaves the system very gently, unlike the rather fast up and down / undesirable jittery effects of normal coffee.

Where is it grown?

The guayusa you can buy from our site is shade grown in agroforestry systems and harvested by indigenous farmers in the Amazon. 

What's the best way to brew it? 

Like any tea or coffee you are going to find the optimum volume of product and brewing time that suits you best. 

The general volume of guayusa per cup seems to be around 2g. This is what we put into our pure guayusa tea bags - and it make a perfect brew for us - delivering just the right taste and energy hit.

Of course, with our loose leaf guayusa, you can choose to put less or more in. I would say at home we probably do make it a bit stronger - in the same way you might have an extra shot in a cappuccino or a double espresso, etc.

One striking difference with guayusa is that it's pretty much impossible to over brew it - it has very low tannin content so does not have the bitterness of tea or coffee (it also won't stain your teeth or cups - cool, huh?)

How much caffeine does guayusa contain?

A cup of tea made with 2g of Guayusa would give around 38mg of caffeine where a normal cup of coffee might be more in the region of 95mg. Of course you can make the Guayusa stronger to your taste. It releases the caffeine more slowly into the system. This makes its energising effects less aggressive than coffee and generally feel easier on the body, while still giving a stimulative effect. 

Can I drink guayusa if I'm pregnant or breastfeeding?

The general advice on consuming caffeine would be to not consume caffeinated products it if you are pregnant or breastfeeding, so we would not advise drinking guayusa if you are pregnant or breastfeeding, as it ultimately contains caffeine.

Is it really a kind of holly?

Yes. The way plant species are named is generally as follows: The Latin 'genus' (family) comes first, followed by the 'species'.

The holly you will be familiar with in Europe is 'Ilex aquifolium'. Guayusa is 'llex guayusa' - so they are the same family (holly (Ilex)), but simply a different species. You may have heard of 'Yerba Mate' - this is also a more well-known caffeinated holly. This can be bitter when prepared, where Guayusa is not at all bitter. Yerba Mate is 'Ilex paraguariensis'.

Where does guayusa grow?

Primarily, Ilex guayusa grows in the eastern Ecuadorian provinces of Pastaza and Napo. It is also found in parts of Columbia and Peru.

What are your shipping costs?

Please note these are the maximum prices you will pay. For smaller value packs (e.g. 75g packs of loose leaf or our tea bags) the prices may end up cheaper! You'll see the calculated shipping as you move through the checkout. The table below is a good guide but there may be some variance depending on what you order. Please note we are unable to send orders to countries outside of the EU.

United Kingdom Cost
1 packet £3.50
2 packets £3.75
3 packets £4.00
4 packets £4.50
5 (large) - 10 (small) packets £5.00
£60 order value and over Free postage
Europe only (We don't ship outside the EU)*  
1 packet £6.00
2 packets £7.00
3 packets £8.50
4 packets £9.00
5 (large) - 10 (small) packets £10.00
£60 order value and over
Contact us for a quote

*We are only able to ship to the EU at the present time. If you order from a country outside of the EU we will regrettably need to cancel your order and refund you in full.

Explore our range of guayusa teas