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compostable wrapper

Our Movement Towards
Planet-Friendly Packaging

The First-Ever
BPI-Certified Wrapper

With our new wrapper, we’re able to reduce the amount of waste that comes from using our product, while maintaining the high-quality of our efficacious, medicinal herbs. And while this is a step in the right direction, there’s still work to be done. Watch the video below to learn more about our compostable wrapper and visit our partners’ websites below to join us on our sustainable packaging journey.

How We Got Here

A Tea Wrapper 10 Years In The Making

Ethical and responsible business practices have been at the heart of everything we do. From sourcing to packaging, we’ve used science and research to guide us in creating what’s best for you and the planet. And now, after almost a decade of research, development, and rigorous testing, we’re excited to launch the first-ever BPI-certified, industrially compostable tea wrapper.

Why BPI?

BPI Certification ensures that a product has undergone rigorous testing to meet stringent standards for compostability. Purchasing products with the BPI Certification mark supports a commitment to a sustainable future where packaging and food scraps can be composted together, rather than ending up in a landfill.

Frequently Asked Questions

Breaking Down
The Compostable Wrapper

As the global plastic problem continues to grow, with packaging alone accounting for 40% of the global total of plastic waste, Traditional Medicinals recognizes the need to improve its packaging– more specifically, the plastic wrappers that protect and preserve our high quality, medicinal teas. We have made it a company priority to transition to compostable wrappers on select teas in 2023, and to develop a sustainable packaging roadmap for the future.

While TM’s tea bags are fully compostable, the current wrappers found on TM’s tea bags that protect the quality and efficaciousness of the teas are not compostable. These new wrappers replace non-compostable wrappers and should be disposed of at an industrial composting facility.

BPI certification guarantees that a product has undergone rigorous testing and meets stringent standards for biodegradability, compostability, and eco-friendliness, ensuring that it truly breaks down and returns to the earth, leaving no harmful residues behind. Purchasing products with the BPI Certification Mark supports a cleaner environment and a commitment to a sustainable future. 

While an imperfect solution, industrial composting is the only viable option for breaking down compostable packaging, at scale. BPI-certified packaging, like our compostable tea wrappers, requires Industrial Aerated Composting to fully break down. This commercial-scale composting environment helps maintain the high temperature and oxygen flow requirements necessary to ensure full breakdown (in less than 12 weeks) into bio-based elements that can be added back to soil. At the simplest level, home composting, for those who have the space and time to maintain a backyard compost pile, produces a nutrient-rich soil as a result of the breakdown of organic waste feedstock such as food scraps, grass clippings, leaves, and tea bags. While home compostable feedstock can be sent to industrial compost facilities, industrially compostable feedstock should never be added to home compost piles. 

Given that our new compostable wrapper needs to provide a sealed layer to prevent oxygen and moisture from negatively impacting the efficacious value of the herbs, we had to choose an industrially compostable substrate for our tea bags. We hope in the future, with continued innovation and investment, there will be more resources and packaging options that will be home compostable as well.

We pack each tea bag into a tamper-evident, oxygen, and moisture barrier sealed wrapper, which is essential for preserving the stability of herbal ingredients. Exposure to air, light and humidity has a negative impact on the quality of cut, dried herbs. The sealed tea bag wrapper assures that the quality of the herbs remains intact until they reach the teacup, which is an important consideration when using teas for self-care. We source pharmacopeial quality herbs for many of our medicinal teas, and it is essential to protect their quality. The wrapper is not excessive packaging for a medicinal-grade herbal tea, but rather an absolute requirement for these teas to maintain their efficacy.

While only 15% of consumers have access to an industrial composting facility in the United States, this number is quickly growing. Traditional Medicinals believes industrial composting is a waste solution we should advocate for and support; and we are leading by example, but we need your help. To advocate for a zero waste solution in your area, visit Policy + Advocacy - Packaging Collaborative (packaginginnovationportal.com) for more information.

We are on a journey towards zero waste packaging and working to find solutions that are planet-friendly. Our new BPI-certified wrapper is made from certified industrial compostable materials. The metalized barrier is non-migratory and is comprised of a thin layer of food-grade aluminum and biobased layers, commonly found in food packaging that protect the quality and freshness of our herbs. The aluminum layer is covered by a biobased layer, which is the only material that directly touches the compostable, natural abaca fiber teabag. These materials are food-grade quality, BPI-certified, and fully compostable.

This packaging will begin to appear on shelves with select products starting in April 2023. The first products that will fully transition to compostable wrappers in 2023 include Raspberry Leaf, Dandelion Leaf + Root, Nettle Leaf, Licorice Root, Turmeric with Meadowsweet and Ginger, Hibiscus, Reishi Mushroom with Rooibos + Orange Peel, Lemon Ginger, Ginger Aid, and Ginger. 

We will continue to transition additional products to this compostable wrapper in the next few years; and TM is committed to developing a sustainable packaging roadmap that sets the company up to research and invest in sustainable packaging solutions.

Please visit https://findacomposter.com/ to learn more and find a facility near you. 

Our Partners

We can't make packaging more sustainable alone. Learn more about our partners and how you can join us on our sustainable packaging journey.

Headshot of Find a Composter

Find a Composter

Easily find a compost location, find out where you can drop off certain materials, and more, all with FindAComposter.com. Click below to see for yourself.

Learn More
Headshot of BPI Certfification

BPI Certfification

See what goes into becoming BPI certified, and why this certification is the leader in compostable products and packaging.

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Headshot of Zero Waste Campaign

Zero Waste Campaign

Join us in this inspirational campaign to reduce and/or eliminate single-use plastics in products, packaging, and personal lives.

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Headshot of OSC Advocacy

OSC Advocacy

We've been fighting alongside our friends at One Step Closer to reduce waste from packaging. See how you can get involved today.

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