Tea is the most widely consumed beverage in the world next to water, and can be found in almost 80% of all U.S. households. It is the only beverage commonly served hot or iced, anytime, anywhere, for any occasion.
On any given day, over 158 million Americans are drinking tea.
Enjoy this collection of tea facts over a warm, comforting cup of tea.
1. The word tea comes from the Chinese T’e, which was the word in the Amoy dialect for the plant from which tea leaves came. In Mandarin, the word was ch’a, which is where the words char and chai are derived from.
2. Coming next to water, tea is the second most consumed drink in the whole wide world.
3. On an estimate, there are about 1,500 kinds of tea and there could be more. So you just don’t say “tea”. You have to be specific which of those 1,500 kinds you are referring to.
4. Teas don’t taste the same. Their taste would depend largely on the temperature and taste of water and the time they took to brew. That’s why the Chinese recommend fresh water from lakes and rivers, they said it’s the best but I’m not pretty sure there’s much cleaner water around, eh?
5. Tea is believed to have arrived in Europe thanks to a Portuguese Jesuit priest named Jasper de Cruz. He visited China in 1590 when Portugal was granted trading privileges with the country and was allowed to bring some of the plants he discovered with him when he returned home.
6. Not surprisingly, China is still the biggest producer of tea and supplies nearly 29 percent of the world’s total, with India coming in a close second. You may be surprised by some of the other countries in the top 10 list with Iran, Vietnam, Turkey and even Argentina making appearances.
7. Tea will absorb odors around it. Here is a tip for removing food odors from your hands. Pour some tea over your hands and the tea will remove all odors from your fingers, and leave them smelling great. It even works great with fish odors!
8. Recent studies have shown that drinking between one and two cups of tea per day may promote fertility by stopping abnormalities in our chromosomes. In a recent test 250 women drank as little as half a cup of tea per day and their pregnancy rates were twice as high as those who did not.
9. Most of the world’s tea is grown in mountain areas 3,000-7,000 feet above sea level and between the Tropic of Cancer and the Tropic of Capricorn. Tea-producing countries include Argentina, China, India, Indonesia, Kenya Malawi, Sri Lanka, and Tanzania.
10. Tea is the national drink in Iran and Afghanistan. Green tea is consumed as a thirst quencher, and black tea as a warming beverage. Both of them are prepared with lots of sugars.