Before I delve in, I want to explain the exact meaning of this post's title. Among tea bags, there is a broad range of quality. But my personal experience has been that green tea bags range much farther into the low end of quality, poor quality, than do black tea bags. In other words, the worst green tea bags are much worse than the worst black tea bags.
It's been my experience that there is a certain base level of quality one can expect from even stale, low-end tea bags of straight black tea, as well as familiar styles of tea like Earl Grey, Ceylon, Irish Breakfast, etc. And it has also been my experience that the best green tea bags are about as good as the best black tea bags...but I think there are some really terrible green teas out there in tea bags.
The following highly subjective diagram illustrates this point:
Why? Because people buy green tea for reasons other than taste:
Although there may be other factors, such as a tendency for black tea to hold its flavor longer, which can partially explain the phenomenon I'm getting at here, I think there is one factor that overwhelms the others.
I think the broader range of quality among green tea bags for sale in America can be mostly explained by noting that here in the U.S., people frequently drink green tea for "health" reasons, whereas they rarely drink black tea for health reasons.
Black tea, on the other hand, is consumed primarily for taste, so any products on the market that were bad beyond a certain point would quickly stop being purchased. Green teas, on the other hand, persist, because people are buying them and drinking them because they feel they "should" drink them. There's that word "should" again, causing problems in our tea culture.
My advice, to everyone, is to drink what tastes good to you. Not only will you be helping to shape the marketplace in a positive way by weeding out the inferior products, but you'll probably be healthier too because you'll be drinking fresher, higher-quality tea.
What do you think?
Do you buy into my reasoning here? Does your own personal experience fit with the point illustrated in my diagram? Do you agree that the word "should" and beliefs related to statements involving what we "should" drink can undermine quality and allow inferior products to persist in the marketplace?