Microplastics Released by Tea Bags
Most mesh tea bags are made of 20 to 30 percent plastic, which can release microplastics and nanoplastics, causing harmful effects for both human health and the environment. In a study published in the journal Environmental Science & Technology, researchers found that one standard tea bag made with plastic released 11.6 billion microplastics and 3.1 billion nanoplastics into a cup of tea. The particles in the tea matched the nylon and polyethylene terephthalate in the original tea bag.
Safer alternatives include steeping loose teas with a stainless steel or silicone tea strainer, or purchasing tea from brands that offer plastic-free teabags. Organic teas may still have plastic in the tea bag, as the packaging is not overseen by organic-certifying organizations.