Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Tea Myth Tuesday - Factory Floor Sweepings

Welcome to Tea Myth Tuesday - on Tuesday this time. Today's myth: Tea Factory floor sweepings are used to make teabags. This is an arithmetic problem:

  • There are about 4000 tea factories in the world.

  • Each of them produces about 4 tonnes of tea per year.

  • Factory waste is 1-2% or about 15 tonnes of waste

  • Total sweepings are 60,000 tonnes.

  • 3 Trillion tea bags are produced each year! This would require 750,000 tonnes of sweepings! So, BUSTED.

As a side factoid of interest, most floor sweepings go back on the tea fields as fertilizer, and CTC tea is primarily used for tea bags.

Thanks to Nigel Melican at Teacraft for this information.

See you for Tea Fact Friday -

Happy Tasting



  1. It really seems that using "floor sweepings" would be a huge health risk.

    I wish some stores would carry tea dust (like matcha, only in different flavors) because it would be perfect for baking. Earl Grey sugar cookies anyone?

  2. Great news Sarah, just take whole tea leaves, crush them if needed by hand or mortar and pestle and add to cookies or shortbread. Add the tea in at the butter creaming stage - I've done this with shortbread several times and look forward to our holiday Peppermint Bark tea because that was FABULOUS!

  3. It's hard to believe I never thought about that. Thanks a lot!

  4. Thanks for sharing. Great post very Informative, also checkout The Floor Factory