Yorkshire Tea has swapped the Dales for the desert highway as part of a new campaign that pokes fun at the bad quality tea Brits have to put up with abroad.

The Bettys & Taylors of Harrogate company has invested £3m in the above-the-line campaign up 50% on last year's advertising budget which will use film footage of a Yorkshire Tea-branded van driving across the US, dishing out cups of tea to expats and British tourists.

The van is still on the road at the moment and the TV advert will break on 7 February. A dedicated Facebook page is following the San Francisco to Boston road trip.

The van, called Little Urn, is seen visiting famous sites such as the Grand Canyon and Las Vegas, where Matt Goss, the former singer of 1980s boyband Bros, shares a brew with the team of drivers.

Cups of Yorkshire Tea are provided to a group of ex-pat Harley-Davidson bikers and a Yorkshireman who runs a cricket team in Florida.

Echoing PG Tips last week ['Unilever has got the hots for emotional PG Tips marketing', 22 January, p29], Yorkshire Tea MD Andy Brown said tea brands had to embrace the emotion of enjoying a brew to revive the category's long-term decline. "Marketing that says 'we make the best quality tea' does not trigger emotions," he said. "But a bad cuppa is something most of us have suffered while abroad and it has emotional resonance. As PG Tips told you, tea should be marketed as an emotional thing. "

Sales of Yorkshire Tea jumped an impressive 14.3% to £46.1m last year [Nielsen 52w/e 2 October].