Inside the Factory

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Tea Bags

Series 3 - Episode 1 Tea Bags

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Review

This right here is the finest how-it-works show on television. Gregg Wallace and Cherry Healey’s conveyor belt of factory facts regularly draws more than two million viewers, and it rarely disappoints.

Get past the firestorm of mateyness that Gregg presents to bemused factory workers and every segment of the show conjures up the kind of dumbfounding trivia you can’t believe haven’t been on TV before now. We start series three at the Typhoo plant near Liverpool to learn how they make 14 million teabags a day. Yes, a day.

But really, how interesting can a teabag be? Well, among other things we learn what distinguishes white, green and black tea (it’s in the polyphenols) and the slightly weird-looking stuff they make the bags from (part hemp, part plastic, it turns out).

And all the while, Gregg whirls his arms about and grins under a blue hairnet, bellowing “Maaate!” at people while big machines roar in the background. It shouldn’t work, but it does.

Summary

Gregg Wallace, Cherry Healey and Ruth Goodman investigate the origins and production of more household staples, beginning with tea. Gregg looks at the factory that produces one quarter of all the tea drunk in Britain. Meanwhile, Cherry Healey examines an African tea processing plant, and Ruth Goodman sheds light on how Second World War troops risked their lives to brew up.

Cast & Crew

Presenter Gregg Wallace
Presenter Cherry Healey
Contributor Ruth Goodman
Director Sam Bailey
Director Will Aspinall
Executive Producer Sanjay Singhal
Executive Producer Alice Harper
Producer Emma Pound
Producer Sam Bailey
Producer Will Aspinall
Series Director Michael Rees
Series Producer Amanda Lyon
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