In 1998 Seth Goldman went for a run in New York City and struggled to find the perfect drink afterwards to quench his thirst. To fulfil his desire for a great tasting drink that was just a tad sweet, he started creating his own concoctions along with a college friend. It was then that he realised if he wanted to find the perfect drink to satisfy his tastes he would need to create it himself.


Barry Nalebuff, Seth’s Yale School of Business professor, agreed that there were tons of sweet options and lots of water drinks, but nothing in between to fill the void.  He had just returned from India where he studied the tea industry and realized that in the U.S. most companies used only the lowest grade of tea leaves, referred to as dust and fannings.  During his trip, Barry also thought of the perfect name for a drink – Honest Tea.  They both realized it was the perfect moment to fill the gap in the market and launch a beverage in the U.S. that would strive to create healthy and honest relationships with its customers, suppliers and the environment. 


Seth took a deep breath and quit his job at Calvert Mutual Funds. He started brewing his first batches of tea in his kitchen in Bethesda, MD and brought the samples to Fresh Fields (Whole Foods Market).  They placed an order for 15,000 bottles and Honest was in business. To date, Honest can be found in more than 100,000 stores across United States. The dream that took root in Seth’s kitchen became a company that has now expanding into the UK. Seth continues to run the business as the Co-Founder and TeaEO Emeritus in Bethesda, MD with the same passion towards health, the environment and social responsibility.



Click here to find out more about Honest and it’s products in the United States


“It is important to note progress, but almost more important to acknowledge
shortcomings. The potholes help prepare us for the journey ahead.”

From the USA to the world

Seth Goldman

Co-Founder and TeaEO Emeritus

Seth Goldman co-founded Honest out of his home in 1998 with Barry Nalebuff of the Yale School of Management. Today, Honest is the top selling organic bottled tea in the US and is carried in more than 100,000 outlets. Under Seth’s leadership, Honest has developed innovative partnerships with its organic and Fair Trade Certified™ suppliers. Seth graduated from Harvard College (1987) and the Yale School of Management (1995), and is a Henry Crown Fellow of the Aspen Institute. Seth and Barry are the authors of the New York Times bestseller Mission in a Bottle, a business book told in comic book form, which was published in September 2013.


Click here to watch Seth’s TEDx talk about how entrepreneurs can change society. 

Barry Nalebuff


Barry Nalebuff is the Milton Steinbach Professor of Economics and Management at Yale School of Management. A graduate of MIT, a Rhodes Scholar and Junior Fellow at the Harvard Society of Fellows, Nalebuff earned his doctorate at Oxford University. In addition to his work with Honest, Professor Nalebuff also serves on the board of Nationwide Insurance. He and Seth met in 1995 when Seth was a student in one of Barry’s classes. An expert on game theory, Barry has written extensively on its application to business strategy. He is the co-author of Thinking Strategically: The Competitive Edge in Business, Politics, and Everyday Life, the first popular book on game theory, and one used in classrooms worldwide. In his second book, Co-opetition, Nalebuff applies game theory to business strategy, with an emphasis on creating and capturing value. Problem solving and ingenuity is the topic of his third book, Why Not? How to Use Everyday Ingenuity to Solve Problems Big and Small. The Art of Strategy is his updated view on game theory and Lifecycle Investing provides a new approach to saving and investing for retirement. His most recent book, Mission in a Bottle, is written with Seth. In graphic format, the book tells the story of Honest and provides strategic advice for entrepreneurs.