Tea Bags – the case against


We’re sometimes asked whether we have tea bags in our range and we’re happy to explain to our partners & customers why we don’t!

Most importantly, and regardless of what your tea bags are made of (paper or plastic), you may be getting more than you paid for! Paper tea bags are often treated with epichlorohydrin, a compound also found in pesticides and known to cause cancer in animals. Unfortunately, it becomes active when in contact with hot water! If your tea bags are noticeably white, chances are they’ve also been bleached with chlorine!

Pyramid shaped mesh bags are no better. Many of these tea bags are made of different plastics —viscose rayon, PVC, thermoplastic, polypropylene—but the most prominent are food grade nylon or polyethylene terephthalate (PET).

These teabags begin breaking down and leaching chemicals into water at temperatures well below those used to make tea. At the very least, these chemicals alter the taste of your tea.

Tea used in bags is often the tea ‘dust’ and smaller broken particles left over after tea has been sorted. Tea drinkers claim that bags don’t allow leaves to unfurl fully and therefore lack the depth of flavour of loose leaf tea containing larger leaves with more natural essential oils.

For this reason manufacturers often incorporate artificial flavourings and perfumes into their tea bags- particularly for some of the more pronounced, sweeter flavoured teas. If your tea smells too sweet, fruity or spicy to be natural, it probably contains artificial flavours and perfumes.

Loose leaf tea utilises less packaging than tea bags, resulting in fewer raw materials consumed, lower capital expenditure and less energy used in production. Loose leaf tea reduces in landfill mass and the same chemicals in the tea bags that leach into your brew, prevents them from readily biodegrading.

However, tea bag users are quick to promote the convenience of tea bags, and the time saved not having to allow a pot of tea to steep. We question whether this is really an advantage when it only allows them to rush back to their desks at work or their favourite television program before the commercials finish?!

At Tea Shop, we believe that life should include more space to pause and reflect! Taking the time to reward yourself with a real cup of tea is one way of doing this.

Why not make Tea Shop your cup of tea?