The unit price gives a fair idea about the cheapest and costliest brands.
As per the standards, black tea bag should be packed in clean, closed, and dry material that does not affect he quality and the flavour of the tea.
The following particulars are mandatory for marking/labelling on packets of tea:
- Name of the material and trademark, if any
- Name and address of manufacturer
- Batch or code number
- Net weight in grams/no. of tea bags
- Date of manufacture
- Nutritional claim
- Permitted additives
- Maximum retail price
- Tea Board registration number if a flavour is added
- The words 'Best Before' (date to be given by the manufacturer)
- 'Green dot' marking for vegetarian status; standard mark if any
All brands except Lopchu had correct labelling; Lopchu's marking did not not have batch/code no. as required under FSS Regulations, 2011.
As per Indian Standard, the lead content in tea bag shall not be morethan 10 mg/kg (ppm).
- In all brands, lead content was found within the prescribed value.
- The maximum lead content was found in Tetly at 0.964 pp,; the minimum was in Tata
Arsenic was not detected in any brand.
Cadmium was not detected in any brand.
The tea samples were tested for the presence o organochlorine pesticides and organophosphorous pesticide (groups of pesticides).
Note: Chlorpyrifos and malathion were found in Brooke Bond, Lopchu, Organic Nation, Tata and Tetley (chlorpyrifos 0.014-0.189 mg/kg and malathion(0.023-0.054 mg/kg). However, there are as yet no requirements regarding these in the national standards.
A panel was formed to carry out subjective sensory evaluation. Their critical views were taken for each brand examined and tasted by them. The tests were conducted within the closed environment of a lab.
The panel members rated each parameter on a scale of 1 to 5 where 5 stood for 'like very much', 4 "like moderately', 3 'just like', 2 'dislike slightly', 'dislike very much'.