I grew up drinking Milo’s Tea. It was a weekly staple in our refrigerator. My father, an anesthesiologist, always told my family that Milo’s Tea was good for you: all natural, no preservatives and made with pure cane sugar. There’s so much more to Milo’s than meets the eye, especially as we celebrate Mother’s day! Their story is amazing and celebrates the success and passion of three generations of women.
Milo’s was founded in 1946 by Milo and Bea Carlton when they opened Milo’s Hamburgers in North Birmingham, Alabama. In the late 1980’s Bea’s daughter-in-law, Sheila, had the idea to sell Milo’s Tea to grocery stores because customers were coming to Milo’s just to purchase the sweet tea. Milo’s philosophy is simple – use high quality, fresh, natural ingredients, listen to your customers and never sacrifice taste.
Milo and Bea’s son, Ronnie, his wife Sheila, and their two teenaged daughters, Tricia and Leslie, brewed, packaged and loaded their tea onto delivery trucks. After college, Tricia and Leslie came back to work at the family company: Tricia as the VP and Leading Counsel, and Leslie as the Treasurer. Tricia was elected by the family to become CEO and has expanded the business into 38 states. Today, Bea (92 years old) still attends the company cookouts and Christmas parties, and each of these three women (Sheila, Leslie and Tricia) are still actively involved in the business today.
Tricia and Leslie hope their daughters are involved with the company in the future which would be the 4th generation of Bea and Milo Carlton’s family. “In the South, when you have a memory of drinking sweet tea, you always think of your grandmother. My greatest memory as a child was playing in the backyard at my grandmother’s house drinking Milo’s famous sweet tea,” says Tricia.
Today, Milo’s Tea Company still fresh brews their all-natural teas with simple ingredients just like “Mamma Bea used to make. Milo’s Famous Sweet Tea, No Calorie Tea with Splenda and Unsweet Tea have recently expanded into seventeen Walmart Distribution Centers. And their NEWEST drinks: Milo’s Lemonade, Milo’s Tea & Lemonade and Milo’s Decaf Sweet Tea have rolled out into four Walmart Distribution Centers.
“We sell a gallon of tea in Walmart about every two seconds,” says Tricia. Milo’s Tea Company is a part of the Walmart Women Empowerment initiative. Milo’s has just introduced three new products to meet the growing demand of consumers for more Milo’s beverages.