For nations across the globe, the tea trade is seen as a powerful driver of the economy. In addition to the industry’s unlimited offerings that have been able to satisfy consumers’ every whim, tea has also garnered the reputation that it is a drink that supports good health. However, a growing body of medical research indicates that the opposite may be true; it appears that the majority of tea sold on the market may be so tainted that it is unfit for human consumption.
Tea was never meant for the common people in Europe till the 19th century. It was considered a beverage for the royalties and the ultra-rich aristocracy. Ever since the invention of the tea bag in 1908, tea has been embraced by consumers delighted by the ease of steeping. During this time the industry has been driven by mass production without care and consideration for quality. Producers were putting profit margins ahead of safety standards.
The risks are many, such as the use of pesticides in conjunction with the level of fluoride present in commercial tea. Both have been shown to be poisonous if consumed in excessive amounts. Researchers know that the presence of a high level of fluoride can lead to severe health conditions such as osteoporosis, skeletal fluorosis, and dental fluorosis, diabetes, and ailments concerning the liver and kidney. Medical reports have also raised concerns about the effect of some pesticides and consumption of excessive fluoride as a possible cause of cancer
A recent study revealed that teabags made with plastic, leech billions of microplastics into just a single cup of hot water. Premium tea bags, especially those that retain a pyramid shape, are the biggest culprits as they are made with more plastic lining than even a standard tea bag.
These serious issues unfortunately are being somewhat ignored by most of the F&B industry in particular. Due to unawareness, most buyers are ignorant of the risk when selecting a tea brand. The hospitality industry is driven by packaging and cheap prices and doesn’t necessarily focus on the consequences on the consumer’s health.
For those of us looking for an alternative to ingesting pesticides, fluoride, and plastic in our daily brew, yet still want premium tea, there is Newby Teas. Newby tea bags are made from wood pulp and abaca, meaning they do not contain any plastic and are even certified biodegradable. Newby does offer pyramid tea bags, but thankfully these too are plastic-free, being made from corn starch.
Newby is not in the business of copying what others are doing but its mission is to preserve the tea art and culture by rediscovering the hidden truths of this life-saving beverage. Even today, fine teas are considered as life savers as they help in building immunity with the anti-oxidants and polyphenols they contain.
Cheap teas are a product of a nightclub where pretty faces are rampant but character is missing. All tea looks the same but its uniqueness comes in the character of its brew. Educating the masses about the concept of preservation became Newby’s task. As a result, Newby created the most unique preservation and packing plant which is one of its kind in the world. The most minute of the details are vetted including the packaging and design. Newby truly is rare.
Newby, substantially owned and operated by N. Sethia foundation, is a charity structure dedicated to medical research. It is totally self-regulated to ensure the quality of the tea by maintaining meticulous standards. As part of the N. Sethia Foundation, production is subject to governance by authorities and therefore undergoes rigorous testing processes. Newby’s production center has received the highest accreditation awarded by the BRC Global Standards and received an A+ for its compliance with HACCP standards. Newby is a proud member of the Ethical Tea Partnership.
Newby exclusively sources their leaves, confirming they are Eurofin certified prior to the packaging process. Newby follows a rigorous process and parameters of tasting their purchase. The Tea tasters test thousands of cups from different sources and then only the best teas are selected. Newby only acquires teas from prime production and/or second flush.
All of this is reflected in Newby’s vision. Founded in London with the mission to revive the world’s love for quality tea, Newby has become the world’s most awarded luxury tea company.
You can read more on Newby Teas’s process, or even buy directly, at
Written In Partnership With Kathryn Shmid
Image Courtesy of Chitra Collection