These U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) investigators are “tasting” tea. The Tea Importation Act of 1897 was enacted to improve the quality of America’s imported tea, described as “little better than hay or catnip.” Organoleptic experts at FDA sampled lots of every tea entering the country for nearly a century. FDA’s last tea taster, Robert Dick, retired soon after Congress rescinded the law in 1996.

Photo from the FDA