Flavored Tea: Real or Fake?

These teas can resemble virtually any flavor imaginable.

Flavored Tea: Real or Fake?

Postby TimeforTea » Feb 4th, '08, 21:14

I just glanced at Dr. Tea's website, and thought the craving-teas were interesting: Apple Pie, Chocolate Cream Pie, Candy Bar, etc. It states that these teas are made from real chocolate, fruit, etc.

How can we consumers tell if a flavored tea is made from the actual flavor (e.g., blueberry tea from just real blueberries) or with flavors concocted in a chemistry lab? How do we know what the ingredients are?

I was wondering the same thing about this with coffee, too, and the dozens of flavors coffee bean vendors offer.


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Postby Chip » Feb 5th, '08, 02:20

As a consumer in the USA, you can know by demanding a list of ingredients from your on line vendor.

Most vendors flavored teas may include such natural ingredients as fruit and flower pieces. You will often see a very vague term used, natural flavors...this refers to either essence or essential oil derived from the natural source.

If it is chemical, it should be listed on the ingredients as the actual chemical &/or artificial flavors.

I hope adagio will see this and respond since they do a lot of their own flavoring and blending. This is a huge plus vs buying a flavored tea from a vendor who got it from who knows where...ack, tea flavored in China???

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Postby xine » Feb 5th, '08, 12:10

All our flavorings we use for our flavored teas are from Germany. They're referred to as 'natural identicals', which means that molecules from other products are pulled to create the same flavor. For example; if you want an apple flavoring, the natural identical will take from a fig, pear, strawberry, the various components that make up what we think is apple flavoring and scent. They are man-made, and in the states they are still considered artificial, since the natural components are put together in a lab, but in Europe, where they are produced, they are considered natural since they are derived from fruits and plants.

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Postby TimeforTea » Feb 6th, '08, 00:19

Thanks for explaining that!! Stupid question--why don't they just take apple flavor from an apple?

Last edited by TimeforTea on Feb 13th, '08, 00:56, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby Mary R » Feb 6th, '08, 09:51

I'm not sure if the same stuff applies to flavorings and such, but I know that in distilling essential oils, some made from some things go bad so quickly that they cannot even make it to a store, let alone be sold. In others, such as apples, the molecules that make up the scent bond with other things/shift configuration after exposure to air/light so that within a matter of minutes the scent is gone.

I think I read that in a book on essential oils, but that book is currently on loan from my personal library so I can't look it up. If you do take the time to look up essential oils, though, you'll find that 'apple' can't be sold as a true essential oil--you can really only find it as a 'home fragrance oil' or some such nonsense.

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Postby skywarrior » Feb 18th, '08, 02:09

I think Mary is right. In a lot of cases, the flavor doesn't distill properly or the cost would be so high to simply distill the flavor when you can get the same flavor through the proper mixing and save the buyer some money.

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I have often wonder this

Postby faithofgod » Apr 3rd, '08, 01:58

That is a good question. I have bought store bought teas and you can notice a sugary taste to the flavored types. I like naturally flavored teas. My favorite naturally flavored tea is Silver Leaf Tea Company's Orange Vanilla and their standard Vanilla. I have noticed that the vanilla is not as strong as the artificially flavored store bought teas I have bought, but I also noticed that with good quality tea I do not want the tea flavor overwhelmed anyway. :D

The Orange Vanilla tea is at: http://www.silverleaftea.com/orangevanilla-tea-p-371.html

I love this site, I have learned a lot so far!

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