The invention of the tea bag is said to have resulted from the small silk sample bags sent out to potential customers in 1908 by Thomas Suflivan, a New York City tea importer. Silk was subsequently replaced by gauze and later by paper. The market for tea bags in the U.K. began to grow in the early 1960s when approximately 5 percent of tea was brewed from bags. By 1965, the use of bags had risen to 7 percent, and by 1993, tea bags accounted for 85 percent of Britain’s total consumption. In the U.S. 65-70 percent of the tea consumed is made using tea bags. Worldwide, the preference is for loose leaf tea and only 16 percent of tea is made with bags.
The paper used for making tea bags is manufactured from such materials as manila hemp, wood pulp, and rayon. Modern tea-bagging machines can produce approximately 2,000 bags per minute in a variety of shapes and forms - square, round, or pyramidal, single or double chamber, heat-sealed or stapled, tagged or untagged.
To brew tea bags, recommend our Glass Teapot.