How to Store and Package Tea to Keep it Fresh
Tea Freshness, Storage and Packaging
Fresh tea is best. As tea ages it loses its intensity. The
flavors go from ethereal and complex to flat and one dimensional.
Much of this is due to oxidation and the fact that tea absorbs
odors so easily. The exception to this rule of course are
Pu-erh teas, which because of a unique fermentation process
actually develop with age, rather than deteriorate.
must be stored correctly to maintain freshness. Excessive
heat, permeating odors, moisture or exposure can forever alter
the character of your tea. Tea must be stored in a dark, odor-free
and moisture-free environment. An airtight container is necessary
to maintain quality. Do not store tea above a stove. Odors
and heat are more likely here than in other parts of a kitchen.
Room temperature is fine for most tea. Green tea can stored
long-term in a refrigerator, provided there is no moisture
in the storage container. If you store tea in a tin canister,
seal it in a zip-lock bag first. Most tins are not airtight,
they have folded seals, not soldered. We strongly suggest
using an airtight ceramic container with an odor-free silicone
seal and a metal clamp. Check out Tea
Accessories in several sizes.
encourage the use of airtight porcelain containers for long-term
(3+ months) tea storage. The ones we
recommend have odorless silicone seals, unlike many of
the cheaper alternatives available. There are four sizes for
your convenience. The container should be a size appropriate
to the amount of tea to be stored. Do not use a huge container
for an ounce or two of a particular tea. Finally, there is
no substitute for buying fresh teas in reasonable amounts
from a reputable tea merchant. We have just added a round,
small canister, perfect for smaller amounts of great tea.
Timeline for Teas
Oolong - 1 Year
Oolong/Black 1 Year - 18 Months
You may have noticed the simple packaging In Pursuit of Tea,
Inc. uses for their tea. These simple reusable, re-sealable
plastic bags prevent all light from entering. Though they
may not be as attractive as many of the canisters or boxes
with which tea is sold, our bags are optimum for short-term
(generally 2-4 months) storage. Used properly, they will provide
protection from odors, oxidation, and moisture. Few fancy
tin containers or decorative boxes, by themselves, can provide
an airtight seal. Usually, they will not protect teas for
more than one month. Once you have emptied our re-sealable
bag, please consider washing it out and using it for storage
of other dry goods or food items.