Where does tea come from?

All teas come from the same plant, Camellia sinensis. It's grown all around the world, largely between the tropics of Cancer and Capricorn where the climate is wet and warm. Most, but not all, tea comes from India, China, Sri Lanka and Kenya. It can even be grown here in the UK, but the conditions are far from ideal and our reliably unreliable weather makes it hard and well, unreliable!

You can read our blog 'Let's talk Tea' for more information about the different types.

How much tea should I use?

All our loose tea comes with suggested quantities to use on the back of the packet. But a general rule of thumb would be 1 teaspoon per 200ml cup.

How long should I brew my tea for?

All our teas come with a brewing guide to help with brewing times. The time suggested is only a guide and after a while you can experiment with brewing times to end up with the perfect cup of tea to suit your own taste.

Read our "How to brew the perfect cup!" page for more information.

Can I use tea more than once?

Yes! In a practice known as 'steeping' Tea, especially loose tea can be used more than once providing it is not allowed to dry out completely. In japan they will use the leaves from the first pot of the day for the rest of the day, then discard it. Some people feel that the second or third time the tea is used, makes a better tasting cup of tea .

How long will loose tea last?

When properly stored, your loose leaf tea will be fresh, flavoursome and potent anywhere from one to three years. This also depends on the type of tea and what you are using it for. Loose leaf tea has a longer shelf life then tea bags, as the tea leaves and botanicals aren’t finely shredded, they are able to retain more nutrients and antioxidants in their natural form.

Black and Oolong teas will stay fresher longer than Green and White teas. This is because they have a higher oxidized processing time. Pu-erh tea, on the other hand, is made with fermented tea leaves and like a fine wine, when properly stored, is believed to improve with age.

Herbal infusions: the more highly aromatic they are, the faster you should drink it. Infusions with peppermint, spearmint, chamomile, rosemary and lavender all contain volatile oils, which will fade away after a while. They will not be bad to drink, just not all that exciting after a year or more. However, those made with bark, roots and dried berries can last two to three years .

How do I store loose leaf tea?

In order to keep your tea leaves fresh, flavourful and healthy, here are the most important things to protect your leaves from;

 - moisture - light - heat - air - odours

What container can I use to store my loose leaf tea?

There are many types of containers to choose from, glass, metal and ceramic being the most popular choices. Just make sure the container is airtight and protects the tea from the above elements. 

Can I refrigerate loose leaf tea?

NO! Although the tea will be protected from light and heat inside your fridge, it will not be protected from moisture or odours. Loose leaf tea actually holds up best at room temperature. Remember, tea isn’t a fresh perishable, so it really doesn’t need the cold temperatures to keep it fresh. Likewise, you don’t want to store the tea in the freezer either!

Can loose tea be stored in plastic containers?

You should avoid storing your tea in plastic containers for a few reasons;

1: Plastic absorbs odours, the tea will absorb the the odours of anything that was previously stored in the container. Plastic isn’t the best barrier against odours either.

2: Certain botanicals contain high amounts of aromatic oils. Lavender , chamomile, and the spices used in Chai, are all highly aromatic. The oils can act as solvents to the plastic which means you may get microplastic particles in your tea overtime. 

How can I tell if my tea is still fresh?

Organoleptic ….. it sounds like a crazy long scientific term, but all it means is that you use your sensory organs of sight, smell, taste, and mouth feel to determine the quality of a product. Does it look fresh? Are the colours vibrant or dull? Is there a definitive aroma or does it smell flat? Are the flavours true and distinct or does it taste off, metallic or simply old?

Your sense organs are connected your brain which has evolved since the dawn of time to ensure your survival, one of the things the brain can do is determine if something is good to eat or not!! So use your senses, give it a sniff, and try it out.

Does tea have any health benefits ?

YES! Not only is tea a delightfully refreshing drink in its own right, but also contains many natural chemicals that have positive benefits for your health.

There has been a lot of research and many claim that tea can help with a number of ailments and conditions. It contains many useful minerals and vitamins that the body needs on a daily basis as well as containing powerful flavonoid antioxidants and poly-phenols. It is accepted that herbal tea [not strictly a tea but an infusion] can help with many common complaints such as upset stomachs & headaches.

We cannot verify the claims and only report on what has been publicly researched. 


How much caffeine is there in tea ?

Most teas contain approximately 40-70mg of caffeine per cup compared to coffee which contains on average 100mg per cup, and cola which has about 30-60mg per 300ml.

Black teas tend to have more caffeine content than Oolong and Green teas that have slightly less. Herbal and fruit teas, which are not truly teas but infusions, generally have no caffeine. 

Caffeine effects everyone in different ways, care should be taken when drinking high caffeine teas.

Can I drink tea while pregnant or breastfeeding?

Its probably best to ask your GP if you have any concerns about this, and take their advice accordingly. Some teas and infusions may contain ingredients that are considered not suitable.