The humble tea bag 不起眼的茶包

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詞彙: tea 茶葉

Are you a tea drinker? If so, you’re not alone. Every day around the world millions of cups of this popular brew are drunk, and it’s been that way for thousands of years. The oldest discovered tea is from the Han Dynasty, dating from 206BC to 220AD. But it’s thought that the tea trend really took off during the Tang Dynasty in the 8th Century, when it became China’s national drink. Now, Turkey, the Republic of Ireland and the UK are believed to be the biggest tea-drinking nations, per capita.

Tea is consumed in many ways – slurped, sipped or glugged. It can be poured from pots, infused or brewed in the cup using tea bags – and it’s this latter process that is causing concern. Research last year found some premium tea bags might be leaving billions of microscopic plastic particles in the cup.  Scientists from McGill University in Montreal found that some 『plastic’ tea bags shed high levels of microplastics into water. However, The World Health Organization says such particles in drinking water do not appear to pose a risk.

Most tea bags are made from paper, with a small amount of plastic used to seal them shut – made from oil. This has led to debate about whether they can be recycled, but many are still composted. However, gardener Mike Armitage has told the BBC that the plastic contained in the soil could be washed into streams and rivers and ultimately out to sea.

Unilever, the owners of the tea brand PG Tips, said their tea bags are made with a small amount of plastic – used to seal them – and that they are suitable for composting. And the brand Yorkshire Tea said their bags do contain 25% polypropylene, but they were 「actively developing plant-based and biodegradable alternatives」.

While tea bag manufacturers might be doing their bit to reduce plastic pollution, it could be a good time to switch your favourite beverage to coffee, or if that isn’t your cup of tea then try using loose-leaf tea, which can have a better flavour.

詞彙表

tea drinker 喜歡喝茶的人
brew 茶
drink 飲品
consume 喝,飲用
slurp 咕嘟咕嘟地喝
sip 小口喝,抿
glug 大口喝
pour 倒
pot 壺
infused 泡(茶)
brewed 沖泡
tea bag 茶包
premium 高級的,優質的
microplastics 微塑料
drinking water 飲用水
compost 把…製成堆肥
polypropylene 聚丙烯
biodegradable 可生物降解的
beverage 飲料
not be someone’s cup of tea 非某人所好,不合某人的心意
loose-leaf tea 散裝茶葉

測驗與練習

1. 閱讀課文並回答問題。

1. When is it thought tea became China’s national drink?

2. What is the concern about the production of some tea bags?

3. True or false? Tea can be infused from a pot.

4. According to the article, who is looking into developing biodegradable tea bags?

5. What could you use that might give you better flavoured tea?

2. 選擇意思恰當的單字或詞組來完成下列句子。

1. My brother is very drunk – I think he’s _______ too much alcohol!

sipped                     infused                         consumed                brewed

2. The new K-pop star seems to be _______ on social media.

trending                   trended                        trend                       trends

3. If spicy food is _______, just try eating a plate of plain noodles!

not your tea cup      not your cups of tea      your cup of tea      not your cup of tea

4. The restaurant now _______ food waste whenever it can.

slurps                      composts                      brews                     biodegrades

5. Our hotel was located in a _______ position, right by the beach.

premium                  premiums                    premiumed             premiumum

答案

1. 閱讀課文並回答問題。

1. When is it thought tea became China’s national drink?
The tea trend really took off during the Tang Dynasty in the 8th Century, when it became China’s national drink.

2. What is the concern about the production of some tea bags?
Research found some premium tea bags contain billions of microscopic plastic particles.

3. True or false? Tea can be infused from a pot.
False. You can infuse tea in a pot or cup but not from the pot.

4. According to the article, who is looking into developing biodegradable tea bags?
Tea brand, Yorkshire Tea, said they were 「actively developing plant-based and biodegradable alternatives」.

5. What could you use that might give you better flavoured tea?
Loose-leaf tea can give you a better flavour.

2. 選擇意思恰當的單字或詞組來完成下列句子。

1. My brother is very drunk – I think he’s consumed too much alcohol!

2. The new K-pop star seems to be trending on social media.

3. If spicy food is not your cup of tea, just try eating a plate of plain noodles!

4. The restaurant now composts food waste whenever it can.

5. Our hotel was located in a premium position, right by the beach.