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Thread: A single tea bag can leak billions of pieces of microplastic into your brew

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    Administrator Islander's Avatar
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    Default A single tea bag can leak billions of pieces of microplastic into your brew

    Rob Picheta
    September 27, 2019

    (CNN) They're in our oceans, soil, air, snow -- and even in your cup of tea.
    Plastic tea bags are shedding billions of shards of microplastics into their water, according to a new study.
    Researchers at McGill University in Canada analyzed the effects of placing four different commercial tea bags into boiling water.
    They found that a single bag releases around 11.6 billion microplastic particles, and 3.1 billion even smaller nanoplastic particles, into the cup -- thousands of times higher than the amount of plastic previously found in other food and drink.
    The health effects of drinking these particles are unknown, according to the researchers, who called for further study into the area.

    Read more: https://amp.cnn.com/cnn/2019/09/27/h...rom%20%251%24s
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    Default Re: A single tea bag can leak billions of pieces of microplastic into your brew

    I have to wonder whether boiling those teabags made the situation worse. Normally tea is gently steeped, not boiled. And not all tea bags contain plastic. Wicked Leaf, the brand I've fallen in love with, I doubt has any plastic anywhere. https://wickedleaforganicteas.com/
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    Veteran Member grulla's Avatar
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    Default Re: A single tea bag can leak billions of pieces of microplastic into your brew

    I once knew someone that used a perforated, clam shell, silver spoon for loose tea leaves, not plasticized bags: https://www.adamsandrussell.co.uk/pr...forated-spoon/

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    Default Re: A single tea bag can leak billions of pieces of microplastic into your brew

    Without the spoon handle, that's called a tea ball. I have at least 2: a ceramic one and a metal one. But I rarely brew loose tea; the only one I have on hand atm is gunpowder tea. It's hard to imagine any quantity of plastic in a paper or net teabag anyway. Where is it lurking?
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    Default Re: A single tea bag can leak billions of pieces of microplastic into your brew

    I use 'paper' teabags, but they don't break down well in the compost, and worms leave them alone, so I wonder if they have added plastic for strength? I let them dry, shake them into the compost bin and throw the bags out.

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    Veteran Member Mr. Wizard's Avatar
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    Default Re: A single tea bag can leak billions of pieces of microplastic into your brew

    Single use plastic tea bags sounds like a bad idea to begin with. Paper tea bags or loose tea is the way to go.

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    Default Re: A single tea bag can leak billions of pieces of microplastic into your brew

    Actually, it just occurred to me that I have never seen a plastic tea bag! They are all either paper or a fabric netting.
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    Veteran Member Mr. Wizard's Avatar
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    Default Re: A single tea bag can leak billions of pieces of microplastic into your brew

    The plastic tea bags I've seen don't look plastic. They look and feel like paper, but if you exam closely they have a slick feel to them and little more sheen than paper.

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    Default Re: A single tea bag can leak billions of pieces of microplastic into your brew

    Celestial Seasonings is definitely paper. Haven't looked at any others in my basket lately except for Wicked Leaf, which is free of plastic. I'll watch for others... I have multiple brands in the house.
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    Moderator Julieanne's Avatar
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    Default Re: A single tea bag can leak billions of pieces of microplastic into your brew

    If they don't break down easily - and they don't - I suspect the paper teabags are 'plasticized'.

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