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LETTER : The invention of the tea bag

From Ms Virginia Anderson

Sir: In her article "Change brewing for reshaped tea market" (24 February), Glenda Cooper writes that the tea bag was invented in 1953. Americans have been using tea bags most of this century, and John F. Mariani, in The Dictionary of American Food and Drink writes that "the tea bag was first marketed in 1902."

When the noted American composer Barney Childs was a Rhodes Scholar at Oriel College, Oxford, in 1949, his mother, aware of the hardships of rationing in Britain, sent him a parcel of food, including tea bags. His student friends ridiculed this American device, which they had never seen, and he had to make his tea in private while the tea bags lasted.

Sincerely yours,

Virginia Anderson