Good Ol’ Cup o’ PLA

Good Ol’ Cup o’ PLA

With a growing list of products we use on a daily basis being exposed of hiding high chemical contents and being injected with a variety of plastics, it comes with no surprise that tea bags are now in the spotlight.

Teabags, and I will list the specific brands, are commonly made with ‘food grade’ plastic. Tea producers use polypropylene to seal their bags and keep them from falling apart in hot water. Now what would qualify as Food Grade plastic? Well the FDA casually deems types of plastic as safe to come into direct contact with our food. This is interesting considering how little information we have on how plastics affect human health. But hey, let’s call it safe to benefit the corporations who would have to hard of a time finding a way to remove it from the billions of products they pump these plastics into.

At McGill University, here in Montreal, they found that a single bag releases around 11.6 billion microplastic particles, and 3.1 billion even smaller nanoplastic particles, into a cup — thousands of times higher than the amount of plastic previously found in other food and drink.

“We urgently need to know more about the health impact of microplastics because they are everywhere — including in our drinking water,” said Dr. Maria Neira, director of the Department of Public Health, Environment and Social Determinants of Health at the WHO.

The question now is not whether plastics are making their way into our system, it is a question of what they are doing to our bodies once they get inside. 

The tea bag culprits? Most of the higher end brands of course. To name a few:

  • Tetley
  • Twinings
  • Yorkshire Tea
  • Co-op

What are the alternatives? Simple! Put loose leaf, dried tea leaves in an infuser and enjoy a good ol cup of, plastic-free, tea.