Monica Sunny’s love for chai has always been prevalent in her life. Originally, Monica lived in India where “chai” translates to “tea.” Once she moved to the United States as a child, she made chai with her parents. She continued to stay true to her roots by teaching her sons how to make chai tea.
While at playdates for her sons, a mom encouraged her to start selling chai. At first, it was just a side project out of Monica’s basement. She launched a website called The Chai Box selling individual tea blends and concentrates. During the first two years, Monica fulfilled orders once every two weeks and posted “chai meditations” on Instagram. According to the article linked below, these postings consisted of “a 20-minute morning ritual of blending chai in her kitchen.”
Monica continued to hustle by getting deals at local coffee shops and attending a tradeshow. Meanwhile, she continued to keep her full-time job. Suddenly, the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic led to Monica losing her job and her husband getting furloughed. Nonetheless, she kept posting her “chai meditations” on Instagram and gained a greater following during the pandemic.
Throughout this process, Monica would only produce The Chai Box if she could sustainably and ethically scale organic ingredients from India. Monica exclaimed, “Chai was the one thing that connected me back to India, to my culture.” She was committed to educating customers about a drink that is meaningful to the people of India and helps consumers too.
In the late winter of 2021, the company grew and moved into a large production facility. Shortly after, Oprah Winfrey expressed interest in the product. Sales boomed when Chai Box made Oprah’s Favorite Things 2021 list. Additionally, the company was showcased on “Good Morning America.” This success has continued to influence current sales. Monica enjoys working on this company with her family and noticing how chai unites people!
Take this time to honor the special women in your life! Get with friends and family to answer these questions about a loved one in your life.
- What’s your favorite family tradition that Mom does better than anyone else?
- When did Mom help you most in your life? How was she so helpful?
- Describe a moment in time when you were most proud of Mom.
- How are you like Mom? Which personality traits of Mom's do you show the most?
- What is one story with Mom that you can’t help but laugh about when you think of it?
For more on Monica Sunny’s story, view the full article here