How Long Does Tea Last (And Why)?

Exact Answer: 3-4 Months

For many people, tea is a low-cost pleasure that they can have in the morning and in the evenings to rest and loosen up. However, you may ask how long your tea will last or when to consume it up and change it with a new package as time goes on. 

Tea, like many other beverages, has a best before date rather than an expiry or use by date. That’s because it diminishes its flavour and aroma over time or becomes fully stale. The amount of time tea may be stored fresh, although, is determined on the variety of tea and how it is packed.

Loose leaf tea kept in containers, for instance, will lose its flavour over time, although dry leaves will last longer. However, after some time, their original flavour may fade as well. As a consequence, it’s a good idea to get to know your tea prior to actually serving it.

How Long Does Tea Last?

Type Of TeaDuration
Black TeaUp to 2 Years
White TeaUp to 1 Year

The excellent news is that tea will keep for three to four months in a packet and up to a year in an airtight tin.

We suggest keeping your tea correctly and shielding it from heat, light, air, and moisture as much as possible to ensure that it stays as fresh as possible. Tea can usually be consumed for up to a year after buying if it is properly maintained.

As far as it’s maintained correctly, tea is forgiving and rarely degrades. Older tea may simply be less flavorful and fresher than new tea, resulting in a weaker, stale-tasting cup. Tea does not, in this respect, have an “expiry date” beyond which it is no longer safe to consume.

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Tea, on the other hand, can soon go stale or bland if not stored properly. Tea can become bad in rare circumstances when it is subjected to moisture and heat. If you’re not sure if your tea is still good, replace it with new tea and experience a fresh, fragrant cup.

The leaves of green tea are more fragile than those of other teas. If stored incorrectly, it quickly loses its aroma, colour, and flavour. White tea, green tea, and light oolong teas, for example, have a lower shelf life than more oxidised leaves.

Black tea can last for up to two years. Tea that has been lightly oxidised should be consumed within 6 months, whereas tea that has been severely oxidised will last longer. White tea will keep for at least a year, but drink it within 6 months if you want to savour the richness of pure spring silver needles.

Why Does Tea Last For That Long? 

Tea expires as a result of poor storage conditions, contact with air, and exposure to mold, heat, or water. Despite the fact that many packaged teas have an expiration date stated on the box, properly stored tea will likely be safe to use well beyond that date.

If the leaves haven’t changed colour or aroma, they can still be used if they’re clear of mold and pests. Pure unflavored tea is frequently avoided by pests and insects such as moths and ants.

To retain the taste and quality of loose leaf tea, it’s vital to keep it properly. Tea is vulnerable to air, humidity, light, and heat, and it will decay if exposed to any of these factors for even a short period of time.

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Using an opaque and well-sealed storage jar is the most efficient approach to keep your tea fresh. For this purpose, tea tins are an excellent choice for storing tea.

Only use glass jars, such as mason jars, if the tea will be kept in a dark drawer or cupboard. Tea should be stored in a cool, dark distant place from any excessive heat or light.

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Conclusion

The benefit of appropriately keeping tea bags is that they can be used even after their best before dates have passed. The best before date on almost any type of tea is usually not an expiry date.

It is instead the developer’s best guess for how long the tea will remain in prime shape. As a consequence, commercialized tea bags can be used at any time if they are maintained correctly.

Taking all of these considerations in mind, we can ensure that our tea lasts longer and tastes its finest. The best part for tea aficionados like us is that we will not have to worry about our tea going bad because we normally eat it before it’s halfway through its expiration date.

References

  1. https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/10408398.2020.1868970
  2. https://link.springer.com/chapter/10.1007/978-94-007-5634-2_100
  3. https://search.proquest.com/openview/6170b5d8dbc47f676844b90df4fb9a99/1?pq-origsite=gscholar&cbl=54977