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Difference between Black Tea and Green Tea

Tea is one of the most popular drinks across the world which comes in different varieties. The two varieties which are widely consumed across the world are black tea and green tea. Though both the varieties are obtained from the leaves of the same plant (Camellia sinensis), there are significant differences between them. Let us see how black tea differs from green tea!

Black Tea:

It is a fully oxidized tea which has strong aromatic flavour and high caffeine content. To produce the black tea, the whole leaves of tea plant are cut at peak freshness and allowed to wither naturally to reduce the amount of water in the leaves. Then the leaves are kept in a room to let them dry and oxidize completely by a process called fermentation. In other words, after harvesting, the leaves are withered, crushed and oxidized to produce black tea. The fermentation changes the chemical composition of the tea leaves: The leaves become dark and develop their characteristic strong aroma and bold flavour.

Green Tea:

The production of green tea begins in the same way as black tea. The main difference lies in the duration of fermentation. The green tea leaves are allowed to wither slightly then they either pan-dried, oven-dried or steamed to prevent oxidation. As the leaves don't undergo fermentation, they retain the green colour and the lighter, grassy or earthy taste.

Furthermore, green tea contains the antioxidant called EGCG which has medicinal properties so green tea can be used to treat various diseases. It also contains caffeine which is a stimulant, so helps improve brain function, concentration, and elevates mood.

Based on the above information, some of the key differences between black tea and green tea are as follows:

Black Tea Green Tea
The leaves are withered, crushed and oxidized to produce black tea. The leaves are harvested, withered and heated through steaming to produce green tea.
It is oxidized completely. It is partially oxidized.
It is bitterer than green tea. It is slightly bitter in taste.
It becomes dark and has a stronger aroma and flavour. It retains green colour and fresh flavour.
Its polyphenols are oxidized completely. It retains more polyphenols, tannins, catechins and antioxidants than black tea.
The leaves become dark after oxidation. The leaves retain the green colour and are rich in chlorophyll.
It has more anthocyanins than green tea. It has fewer anthocyanins than black tea.
It is not rich in minerals. It is rich in minerals like iron and potassium.
It lacks vitamin C and has less vitamin A than green tea. It contains more vitamin A and C than black tea.
It contains more than twice vitamin B3 than green tea. Green tea leaves have less vitamin B3.
It contains less antioxidant as catechins are oxidized to theaflavins and thearubigins. It contains more antioxidants as it undergoes partial oxidation.
It has more caffeine than green tea. It contains less caffeine than black tea.
It is consumed with or without milk. It is usually consumed without milk.
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