Tea is a dried leaf product and can be stored for 2 years in an air-tight container, away from sunlight, before its flavour and aroma will degrade noticeably. For more information about storing your tea follow this link.
Loose leaf tea is generally of a higher quality, it has a larger leaf and therefore requires longer brewing, this achieves a brighter flavour and has fewer impurities giving clearer liquor and has fewer chemical additives reducing toxic residues.
All teas are sampled; laboratory tested and certified chemically free of arsenic, cyanide and pesticide residues before they leave the country of origin. The certificates are prepared by an (AQIS) approved testing laboratory and presented to the Australian Quarantine Inspection Service (AQIS) when each tea shipment arrives in Australia.
Gourmet teas are high-grade loose leaf teas with no impurities, no chemical preservatives, no artificial colours or flavours, some use added nature flavours. Gourmet tea bags are becoming popular in the hospitality industry because they combine the benefits of quality loose leaf tea with ease of leaf disposal.
Some commercial mass market tea bags contain a high percentage of low quality tea dust, many impurities, added artificial colours and flavours and brew almost instantly to achieve an inferior flavour. Some tea bag materials contain bleaching chemical residues. When brewed, these tea bags are the tea equivalent to cask wine.
After the tea leaves have been picked and processed in the tea growing regions, the fresh leaves are packed into sack/chest lots for auction. Our network of international tea brokers buy at the auction houses and export to us within months of picking.
This process ensures our teas are fresh, move quickly into the market and are replaced by fresh tea shipments at regular intervals. So, you can be assured our teas are always fresh with a full flavour.
Nature flavours originate from natural vegetable raw materials such as fruit, spices, herbs or roasted coffee. They may only be produced by using physical, enzymatic or microbiological processes, for example squeezing, distilling, warming, and filtration, grinding, blending, fermenting or crushing.
Nature-identical Flavours (Artificial Flavours)
Artificial Flavours originate from chemical synthesis of substances called esters or acetates. Materials used do not have to be of natural origin. The chemical derivation of the flavour material is a closely guarded commercial recipe which has the approval of AQIS but is unknown to us.
All teas contain caffeine, caffeine in different quantities due to the different production methods. It acts as a mild stimulant and increases the activity of your digestive juices. It is generally accepted that a cup of white tea contains the lowest caffeine; green tea has less than oolong and oolong less than black.
Caffeine mg/per cup (Approx).
• Green Tea contains 8.36mg caffeine
• Oolong Tea contains 12.5mg caffeine
• Black Tea contains av. 50mg caffeine. (Varies 25-75mg)
• Filtered Coffee contains 190mg caffeine
• Decaf Tea, Herbal and Fruit Infusions contain no caffeine.
Tea drinking has been proven to aid digestion, stimulate alertness and performance, combat tiredness and reduce the effect of age related diseases by cleansing the body of built-up toxins.
Humidity, air and light are the enemies of tea. When your tea arrives home it is always best to transfer the tea from the clear packaging into an air-tight tin or caddy. If you prefer a sealed glass jar, keep it in a dark cupboard. Do not store opened packets in a refrigerator because water vapour will get into the packet and never put a wet spoon into a caddy. Be extra careful to separate flavoured teas because the aromas are very powerful and will easily taint nearby teas. See more about Tea Storage here.
The proper storage of tea is of the utmost importance for the dedicated Tea Drinker, tea which is improperly stored will go stale much faster or can accumulate impurities that both alter the flavour and it’s aroma. It is important to learn how to store your teas so that they remain as fresh, clean and flavourful as possible.
There are five things which teas are vulnerable to: light, air, heat, odours and moisture. These five things will rapidly make your stored teas go deteriorate.
Tea should be stored in a dark place, using a glass or clear jar to store tea in sunlight or UV rays will degrade your tea very quickly. If you must use a glass jar, be sure to keep it in a dark cabinet where the light cannot reach it. Sun can also bleach out the teas, making the flavour and aroma almost non-existent. Remember when storing your tea that keeping them in a dark environment is a top priority.
Air is another enemy of tea, as air flow around your stored tea leaves will increase the chances that the tea leaves will absorb moisture and unpleasant odours from the air. Avoid leaving dry leaves laying out, or in packaging with excess air inside the bag, or storing your tea leaves in any porous material such as a resealable zipper package or container.
Stored teas are also very vulnerable to odours, which can be useful when creating teas such as Jasmine Dragon Pearl green tea, because the tea leaves absorb the fragrance and are infused with the odour of jasmine very easily. However this tendency for tea leaves to easily absorb the odours placed near them means that you should also keep your teas stored safely away from areas in your home with strong odours, such as spice cabinets, refrigerators and other areas which contain odours which the teas can absorb easily.
Moisture is the worst enemy of tea and can ruin an entire batch of it within minutes. Dried tea leaves are considered shelf stable because they are completely dry. Unfortunately dry leaves absorb moisture from the air very easily and quickly. Therefore, it is important that you keep your dried tea leaves away from humid areas in your home, boiling water, and other sources of moisture such as above a dishwasher vent or inside a refrigerator. Keep it far away from moisture until you are ready to brew the tea leaves, or the moisture will cause mould, caking and other unpleasant results.
The very best way to store your dried teas is to keep them in an opaque container, making sure your container is food safe and does not have any impurities already in the container (wash and dry it very well before placing your dried tea leaves inside the container for storage). The best containers for storing tea are glazed ceramics, non-reactive metals and plastic containers which will not absorb smells or flavours. Do not store your teas in wooden containers or plastic sandwich bags as these will degrade the quality of the tea as well.
These teas are rich in antioxidants and contain various minerals like calcium, manganese, copper, carotene, selenium, potassium and vitamins A, B, C, E and K. In addition to these, it contains folic acid, niacin amide and other detoxifying alkaloids. Due to its semi fermented nature, oolong tea contains numerous polyphenolic compounds, which provide additional health benefits. These tea leaves like all others also contain small amounts of caffeine. The steeping process during the preparation of tea reduces the caffeine content significantly. A steeping time of one minute brings down the caffeine content to below 50mg. The following are some of their reported benefits:
Regular consumption of oolong tea or white tea is known to reduce the cholesterol levels, thereby lowering the risk of heart attacks. Research proves that those who drink 1 to 6 cups of oolong or white tea in a week were at a lower risk of succumbing to cardiovascular diseases.
The polyphenol compound in oolong tea enhances the metabolism of fat in the body by activating certain enzymes hence; daily consumption of oolong tea promotes weight loss and reduces obesity by accelerating the process of lipolysis which enables the body to burn more fat. The oolong tea weight loss is definitely a much healthier path to choose.
Oolong tea improves oral health by inhibiting the growth of bacteria that causes tooth decay and oral cancers. The antioxidants called polyphenols present in oolong tea contribute to the improvement of dental health and hygiene. Drinking oolong tea helps to prevent the build-up of plaque, fights tooth decay and deters the occurrence of cavities.
The antioxidants present in oolong and white tea provide protection against tooth decay and strengthen the bone structure. It is very effective in preventing osteoporosis in the human body.
The natural polyphenols present in oolong tea act as stress busters and alleviate mood swings. Drinking oolong tea during the day helps to maintain focus and improves mental agility.
Continuous exposure of the skin to free radicals accelerates the process of aging and slows down the rate of exfoliation, resulting in the premature occurrence of wrinkles and dark spots. The high levels of antioxidants present in oolong tea, slows down the oxidation of cells leading to a much healthier looking skin.
A tea rinse made from oolong tea is of a mild and pleasant nature. Not only does it soften, but it also provides an additional lustre to your hair.