Sustainability, describes a lifestyle in which resources are used to their fullest and not depleted or permanently destroyed. Sustainability is a wonderful philosophy as it can be practiced in almost every daily activity and anyone, regardless of age or living situation, can begin to practice it at any point. Whether you drink tea for health, for flavor, to wake up or to fall asleep, you can begin a sustainable practice simply by choosing and using your tea wisely!
Love the earth with loose tea:
Tea is already considered by many to be a sustainable crop since tea leaves used are only cut off of the top of tea plants. Unlike other crops, tea does not have to be harvested from the earth and consistently replanted. Loose tea further supports sustainability long after tea leaves have been cut.
It may seem like an obvious concept, but loose-leaf tea drastically reduces the amount of packaging, resources and environmental impact seen in packaged tea bags at a typical grocery store. Tea bags, even those marked 'biodegradable', can take a very long time to break down once thrown away. In addition, staples are often used to seal the individual bags and larger cardboard boxes package the ten or so bags purchased. Wasted packaging material combined with shipping thousands of cardboard boxes of bag-sealed tea, it turns out tea buyers may be biting off much more than they can chew...or drink.
Loose tea not only requires less packaging material and shipping energy, but often loose teas are more often organically grown, meaning no pesticides or chemicals are used on the tea plants contributing to cleaner air and a healthier environment, not to mention healthier consumers!
Composting with tea leaves:
Creating sustainable habits with tea can extend to after the buying and drinking of loose tea. High in nitrogen, potassium, phosphorus and other minerals, steeped tea leaves are a valuable addition to your compost or alone as mulch. Tea leaves are superb at holding moisture and can be used on soil or exposed areas of your garden to prevent the area from drying out!