Updated: Oct 22, 2020
It's very classically British to love tea. I do enjoy a good cuppa, so much so that our household tea cupboard is packed! Not just classic English breakfast tea, but jasmine, chamomile, rose, green tea, rose green tea, lemon tea, lemon green tea, the list goes on and on. My most favourite I will say is Taylors of Harrogate pink lemonade made in partners with Kew Gardens. Now if you know tea more exciting than that you will have to let me know!
6 million cups of tea are brewed in the UK alone every single day and you might be surprised to find out just how high the plastic content of tea bags can be. Some tea bags have up 25% plastic in them. It is this secret tea plastic which makes teabags difficult to decompose and this means they aren't fully suitable for your compost bin. In some cases when they are marketed as being 'biodegradable' this still isn't exactly true and they still aren't appropriate for your compost bin.
To all those tea drinkers out there, what are we going to do?
Swap to loose leaf! It's quite simple really and I find it makes my tea drinking experience feel a far more luxurious. Not that it necessarily is, but because we are so used to the convivence and fast-paced tea experience of the tea bags, having loose tea feels extra special. I have often found that loose leaf tea also has a better flavour than bagged tea. The environmental benefits of the loose leaf are that they are completely compostable or can go in your food waste without a second thought! It doesn't mean that you need to invest in a bunch of tea strainers as some people find that this doesn't suit them. I am more than happy to use a strainer, but there are now many types of reusable tea bags that people might find to be a more suitable alternative. Having said all of this it doesn't mean you need to go and clear out your entire cupboard of your tea bags, and for me, that would be a lot. On your next tea restock see what loose leaf is available to you. If it is also at an affordable price and you are happy to try it, then this might be your next suitable sustainable swap! If you find that loose leaf isn't in your budget for your weekly shop that is perfectly okay as well. Being sustainable shouldn't break the bank, it's about being smart and sensible with what you can afford. What might suit you best is to look for a tea brand that has less plastic wrapped around their boxes
What loose leaf tea do you recommend? Let me know in the comments section.