by Mike Harney August 16, 2021 2 min read 10 Comments


New & Improved Sachets on the Way!


As we previously reported back in October 2019, we have been working for some time to replace our nylon sachets with greener packaging that is better for the environment and for people. Sadly, COVID-19 threw a viral wrench in our progress.


That’s why we are absolutely thrilled to report that we have three new sachet machines delivered, installed and up and running! Many thanks are owed to one intrepid Japanese salesman who was able to make this possible --domo arigato gozaimasu! These machines only use Neo Soilon material, which is a trade name for polylactic acid (PLA), a plant-based polymer that is derived from sugarcane fibers. For you science geeks, here’s how it’s made:


  1. First, the raw natural material, such as sugarcane, undergoes wet milling, where the plant’s starch is isolated and separated.
  2. Following this extraction, the starch is mixed and heated with enzymes and other chemicals to release dextrose (D-glucose), a type of sugar.
  3. Then, the dextrose is fermented, producing lactic acid monomers, which polylactic acid is primarily made of (as you might be able to guess from the name).
  4. The lactic acid can then be processed into PLA material in two ways: by condensing the lactic acid into a lactide and then using a polymerization.
  5. Then it is spun into a filament, which is woven into the material. 

Because the material comes from sugarcane, that means there are no petrochemicals and no genetically modified organisms (non-GMO).  Big improvement. Also, since it is fermented, there is no sugar left from that cane, which means it is safe for all including diabetics. 


It can be composted, although it does need strict conditions which are usually not found at your home. We will work to make it easy to compost at home. And speaking of composting… any particles that might end inside humans decompose inside the body. 


We are accumulating the fabric and will roll it out soon. The machines that used nylon will be converted when we run out of nylon later this year. 


This is a solid and exciting improvement from where we have been for the past 20 years. As we continue working toward making these improved sachets easily compostable, a reminder that we do offer loose tea for those who prefer not to use sachets or tea bags. In the meantime, cheers to progress!

Mike Harney
Mike Harney


10 Responses

Violet Poynter
Violet Poynter

September 03, 2021

With this improvement in production of sachets, if Webster were defining tea that has integrity of product and commitment to quality of manufacturing,
my recommendation would be: Skip the words. Post a picture of the Harney’s!

Demi
Demi

September 03, 2021

Thank you so much, Harney!!! I am so excited for these new sachets, and thank you for being transparent about the process.

Doreen Duley
Doreen Duley

September 03, 2021

Thank you so much for your continuing efforts to provide excellent teas and care for our planet. This is such good news.

Kay Wren
Kay Wren

September 03, 2021

This is REALLY GOOD NEWS. I am out of loose leaf Earl Grey Imperial and looks like you are too, but I will NOT order the sachets. So I wait.

Tee King
Tee King

August 17, 2021

As someone who was arrested for protesting (stopping three coal trains on their way to China), I’ve been an activist for the planet for some time now. And though I drink primarily loose leaf teas, a tea sachet is sometimes the only option. Thank you for taking climate change seriously and making necessary changes. And thanks for ensuring much of my day is content with a good cup of tea.

Julie A Campbell
Julie A Campbell

August 17, 2021

Love, love, love Harney Teas!
Appreciate your never ending efforts to keep our tea drinking flavorful, safe and efficient for our world.
Keep up the good work and wonderful flavors!!!

Julie A Campbell
Julie A Campbell

August 17, 2021

Love, love, love Harney Teas!
Appreciate your never ending efforts to keep our tea drinking flavorful, safe and efficient for our world.
Keep up the good work and wonderful flavors!!!

Debra Scholl
Debra Scholl

August 17, 2021

The sachets give a stronger flavored tea. I have used the regular tea bags and the flavor is not as strong. Will the new ones be as strong?

Rachel Monfredo
Rachel Monfredo

August 17, 2021

Nice explanation (from one who teach chemical engineering labs, aka science geek ;) Glad to learn of this effort!

Karen Smith
Karen Smith

August 17, 2021

I’m so excited to hear this! Thank you for the update.

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