Tea & Plastic

Did you know that “Some bags contain up to 25% non-biodegradable polypropylene…when you think how many teabags are actually used…” that’s an insane amount of tea right? Some popular brands in the UK proffered the following information about plastic in their tea:

  • Yorkshire Tea said their bags contain 25% polypropylene but they were “actively developing plant-based and biodegradable alternatives”. 🙁
  • Tetley said the plastic in their teabags will not break down in compost but they are “normally so small they are not seen”. It’s called MICRO-PLASTIC Tetley, doesn’t make such great soil
  • Twinings said their pyramid bags were free from plastic but their heat sealed bags do contain some polypropylene fibres.

Source: BBC

 At in green’s we have long known about the non-biodegradable aspects of mainstream tea bags, as well as the bleaching agent used in the process of making the tea bags whiter. Some bleaching agents are chlorine based, which is completely unnecessary.
Why medle with something that is perfectly perfect already: have it loose! This is why we promote the use of loose tea.
Loose tea was the only way tea was served once upon a time, until the invention of the tea bag. The tea bag  has certainly made things neater and a whole lot more complicated too. As with so many other aspects of our modern life, it really isn’t all that surprising that plastic has found its way into our tea, but I do think we should be alarmed, for our health as well as for their lack of biodegradability.
Plastic is known to leach toxins into our foods and drinks, and therefore we should avoid ingesting it at any cost.  As mad as it sounds, a Yorkshire tea teabag contains up to 25%  polypropylene according to the tea manufacturer themselves. Which is quite off putting if like us, you’re trying to live a toxin free life.
Plastic in tea was bought to the nations attention thanks to one Mike Armitage, a gardener from Wrexham in Wales. He grew tired of the tea bags non-biodegradability in his compost heap. So tired in fact that he has started a petition to get plastic out of tea. Mike Armitage’s petition comes at a time when all aspects of plastic is being scrutinised.

You can read the full BBC  about plastic in tea here. And sign Mike Armitage’s petition here if you want to enjoy a cup of tea, plastic free. 



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