Can teabags be composted?
always recommended that gardeners put used tea bags in their
home compost bins but some tea bags leave a plastic web behind once
the tea leaves have rotted away.
This is because many tea bags contain a plastic called polypropylene,
used to seal the bag. This is not biodegradable so it leaves a residue.
Though you can pick out the plastic mesh from your finished compost,
it is a fiddly job and tiny fragments of plastic inevitably break
These tiny particles get in to soil and water where they are
ingested by micro organisms and tiny animals which are eaten by
larger creatures. so the plastic accumulates throughout the food
The dangers of these micro plastics are now clear so it is best
not to compost tea bags unless you are sure they do
not contain any plastic.
Because of these current concerns about plastic in the environment,
many tea bags manufacturers are replacing the polypropylene in their
tea bags to make them fully biodegradable. By the end of 2018 these
brands are supposed to be plastic free: Clipper, Co-op Fairtrade 99,
PG Tips eco-friendly pyramid tea bags, Twinings, Yorkshire Tea.
So, you still need to read the small print on the box or buy loose
See Composting Kitchen
Waste for more advice or download our leaflet on
composting kitchen waste