Tea as well as herbal and fruit infusions represent an important cultural heritage and are also part of a modern lifestyle. Diligent selection of natural raw materials, careful processing, modern production processes, comprehensive quality controls and traditional recipes as well as new blends are the basis for an infinite variety of flavours. The industry steadily improves processes and quality of its products to meet consumer expectations, increasing quality requirements and scientific progress. This comes with many challenges.
THIE plays its part as an active partner in addressing these challenges in particular by the following means:
- Enhancing food safety
e.g. Code of Practice to Prevent and Reduce Pyrrolizidine Alkaloid Contamination in Raw Materials for Tea and Herbal Infusions and THIE's Recommended Microbiological Specifications for Herbal Infusions
- Supporting its members
e.g. THIE Allocation List which allocates the parts of plants currently employed by the herbal infusions trade in the different European Member States specified on the THIE Inventory List according to Commission Regulation (EU) 2018/62
- Understanding regulatory issues
e.g. Best Practice Guidance on the Prevention of Food Fraud; this document considers the risk of fraudulent activity occurring throughout the whole raw material supply chain of tea and herbal infusions, including what actions should be considered as a suitable means of mitigation.
- Providing standards
e.g. Compendium of Guidelines for tea and Compendium of Guidelines for Herbal and Fruit Infusions; these Compendia reflects the practice of the industry in the EU Member States and link it to the relevant legal EU provisions and standards in force.
- Ongoing research
like the studies on the Occurrence of 15 + 1 EU Priority Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons (PAH) in various Types of Tea (Camellia sinensis) and Herbal Infusions and the Transition rates of selected metals determined in various types of teas (Camellia sinensis L. Kuntze) and herbal/fruit infusions.