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    The Storage of Tea

    The proper storage of tea is of the utmost importance, as tea which is improperly stored will go stale or rancid much faster, or can accumulate impurities that both alter the flavor and aroma and can also harm the body.  Therefore it is very important to learn how to properly store your teas so that they remain as fresh, clean and flavorful as possible.

    There are five things which teas are vulnerable to: light, air, heat, odors and moisture.  These five things will rapidly make your stored teas go bad.

    Dark Place

    avoid sunlightYour teas should always be stored in a dark place. Never use glass or clear jars to store as 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 flavor and aroma almost non-existent. Remember when storing your tea that keeping them in a dark environment is a top priority.

    Airtight

    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 odors 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.

    Please note that puerh is an exceptional.  Pu-erh tea should be stored well above ground level and be given good ventilation.

    Hypothermia

    Heat exposure will quickly ruin good tea as well.  Avoid keeping your teas stored in sunlight or near heat sources such as stoves, ovens, or other warm places.  Heat can degrade the quality of the tea, removing flavor and aroma, and increasing the chance that your tea will take on moisture.

    Away from Strong Odors

    Stored teas are also very vulnerable to odors, 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 odor of jasmine very easily.  However this tendency for tea leaves to easily absorb the odors placed near them means that you should also keep your teas stored safely away from areas in your home with strong odors, such as spice cabinets, trash cans, refrigerators and other areas which contain odors which the teas can absorb easily.

    Away from Moisture

    avoid moistureMoisture 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 molding, caking and other unpleasant results.

    7 comments to The Storage of Tea

    • Jami :

      6/6/2016

      So I bought loose tea when I was pregnant with my daughter over 3 years. It was a special blend for pregnancy and I have no idea what it was but we are looking to get pregnant again and I was wondering if I could use the left over this time around. I have stored it in a plastic oxo container inside a pantry.

    • TeaVivre response:

      6/7/2016


      Thanks for your question.

      Before you drink this loose tea, here are some elements that may give you a help to judge a tea whether go stale:

      Appearance: Become mildewed and have a stale taste. If your tea has one of these characteristics, it means go bad.
      Brewed Tea Color: The appearance of tea turns red, and its tea liquid become brown and dark, these mean the tea go stale.
      Taste: Stale tea has a hint of slightly grassy, bitter and sour taste.

      If you store properly and keep it in a dry place, the stale tea can also drink, it's just not as good as fresh ones. I noticed that this was special blend for pregnancy, so here I kindly suggest you considering buying a new one.

      Hope it’s helpful.

    • protiva Rani das :

      5/31/2016

      Hi, I am working with dried green tea extraction. I need to store my green tea sample for a long time. I packed it airtight aluminium bag and kept at refrigerate. Is it Ok?

    • TeaVivre response:

      5/31/2016


      Thanks for your question.

      Yes, that’s okay. Please be noted that, the tea must be carefully sealed before you put it in a refrigerator, because it will expose your tea to moisture and odors from the other foods kept in the refrigerator.

      Hope it’s helpful.

    • paul :

      4/27/2016

      I Have large amount of Soursop fresh Leave in my Farm Land. which i want to be export as dry Leaf tea to abroad.I was suggest if Paper Tube will be the best storage for Dry Leave tea 1 or 2 years storage? Please i need your help. Thank

    • TeaVivre response:

      4/28/2016


      Thanks for your question.

      There are five enemies that you should keep them away when storing the tea: light, air, heat, odors and moisture. Please make sure that the tool you choose is air tight and put them in a dry and cool place. Then your tea will be well stored without lose it original flavor.

      Hope it’s helpful for you.

    • Rumaisa Nordin :

      3/21/2016

      Hi,

      I have an experiment that dealing with fermented tea even before the drying stage...I was wondering what will be the best storage for keeping the fermented tea in good condition because I have to transport the fermented tea around 4 hours before reaching my laboratory

      Thank you

    • TeaVivre response:

      3/22/2016


      Hi Rumaisa,
      Thank you for your question.
      There are several kinds of fermented teas. White tea, black tea, oolong teas and ripened puerh teas.
      Considering the you only need to keep the tea for 4 hours, I think it is ok that you keep the tea in a sealed tea tin, and put in a dry place.
      For long term storage, you'd better keep oolong teas in refrigerator.
      And I'm sorry that I haven't stored the tea before drying, I think I can't provide professional advice on this issue.
      Hope this is helpful to your concern.

    • Dan DeWitt :

      12/4/2015

      I have large amounts of Darjeeling and Jasmie loose leaf tea (2#/ea) and need to store the extra # of each. Will it keep in a refrigerator in a proper container? It was shipped in thick brown paper bags. Can I put the unopened paper bags in a plastic food storage bag and store in the refrigerator or woudl the pantry be a better place?
      Thanks

    • TeaVivre response:

      12/5/2015


      Hi Dan,
      Thank you for your question.
      To store the unopened jasmine tea, you can put the paper bags in the plastic food bags, and then store them in the refrigerator away from odor. This is good for keep jasmine tea. And for the opened jasmine tea, you'd better store them in a reseal bag or a tea tin, and then put it in the refrigerator.
      As for Darjeeling, I'm sorry that I don't know much about it. However, it is a Black tea, so i think you don't need to store it in the refrigerator. You just need to keep it from odor, that's enough. Maybe pantry is a good place.
      Hope this is helpful to your concern.

    • Zhang Bei :

      11/11/2015

      My sister shipped some oolong tea to us from China, but when we opened the box we noticed that the tea had absorbed the odors of some other things she had packed with it. It's a very strong, unpleasant smell. Is there anything we can do to get rid of the smell?

    • TeaVivre response:

      11/12/2015


      hi Zhang Bei,

      Thank you for your question.
      I'm sorry that I can't know the smell of the tea, and can't tell what happened to your teas.
      As you know, tea is very strong in absorbing the smell from other things, so tea sellers always pack the tea very well to avoid the tea absorb foreign smell in the transit.
      If your tea really small unpleasant, I'd like to suggest to do not drink it anymore.
      Hope this is helpful to your concern.

    • John Crump :

      7/18/2015

      We have Green Tea that has been stored in an attic. It is sealed in plastic in the dark but the heat does get high. We would like to use this in Kambucha. Will this affect the quality?

    • TeaVivre response:

      7/20/2015


      Hi John,

      Thank you very much for writing to us.

      For the green teas, you can packed the teas in a sealed container and then put it into refrigerator. The it can keep the teas well.

      Hope this is helpful for you.

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