Food Storage - How long can you keep...

TEA BAGS, COMMERCIALLY PACKAGED — UNOPENED OR OPENED

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18-14 months (best quality)

Tips

  • How long do tea bags last? The precise answer depends to a large extent on storage conditions — to maximize the shelf life of tea bags (including black, green, herbal and oolong), store in a cool, dark cupboard, away from direct heat or sunlight.
  • How long do tea bags last at room temperature? Properly stored, tea bags will generally stay at best quality for about 18 to 24 months.
  • To maximize the shelf life of tea bags, and to better retain flavor and potency, store in airtight containers.
  • Are tea bags safe to use after the "expiration" date on the package? Yes, provided they are properly stored and the package is undamaged — commercially packaged tea bags will typically carry a "Best By," "Best if Used By," "Best Before," or "Best When Used By" date but this is not a safety date, it is the manufacturer's estimate of how long the tea bags will remain at peak quality.
  • Do tea bags ever spoil? No, commercially packaged tea bags do not spoil, but will start to lose potency and flavor over time — the storage time shown is for best quality only.
  • Should you store tea bags in the refrigerator or freezer? Storing tea bags in the fridge or freezer is not recommended, since condensation can result, which will harm the taste and flavor of the tea.
  • How can you tell if tea bags are still good? To test whether tea bags are still good, brew a cup of tea for at least 3 to 5 minutes - if the aroma is weak and the flavor is not obvious, the tea bags should be replaced.

Sources: For details about data sources used for food storage information, please click here

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