Twinings tea graces the shelves of stores in more than 100 countries throughout the world. You’ve likely seen it in just about every grocery store and health store, and it’s even a top favorite among restaurants, cafes and tea shops. So, how did this company begin its journey to taking over tea cups across the globe? It began in 1706 in London, England, with a man named Thomas Twining.

Twinings Tea Shop

Twinings’ shop on the Strand in central London was established as a tea room in 1706.

Twinings was among one of the first tea companies to sell tea in England, and its original location remains in current day London. Back then called Tom’s Coffee House, it later became The Golden Lyon as it migrated from its simple origins of a coffee shop into a tea shop. Ten generations and 200 flavors later, Twinings tea are now considered a staple in the tea industry. Twinings tea has even sent tea to the Red Cross to help with humanitarian aid, and Stephen Twining still works for the tea company today.

Who Are the Twinings?

In 1684, economic troubles led the family to London, and at the time, young Thomas was his father’s apprentice, as he learned the family business of weaving. At 26 years old, he became a Freeman and began working with tea with the East India Company. Tea was introduced to England about 20 years before the family’s immigration, although it was primarily consumed among those of wealth. After all, the water was contaminated during this time, and beverages that were boiled or distilled were very popular. Before tea became available to commoners, people often drank coffee or even ales during all times of the day.

In 1771, Richard Twining took over the tea company. Known as a tough negotiator, he had ambitions to make tea readily available to everyday people. He convinced the Prime Minister that revenues would increase if taxes decreased, because tea smuggling was driving down revenues. The Prime Minister passed the Commutation Act of 1784, which lowered the taxes to make the beverage available to people of all incomes.

In 1837, Queen Victoria granted Twinings a Royal Warrant to supply tea to the British Royal household, and the tradition continues today despite intermittent wars and rationing throughout the times. In 1972, Twinings was the first company to win the “Queen’s award for export.”

What Is In Twinings Tea?

Ingredients for Twinings tea are selected from all over the world for their finest quality. From the tea plantation to the finished product, each tea is tasted 15 times for quality control. In fact, the company’s website boasts that only nine people are responsible for quality control, making certain that each teabag of its kind is just like the others – perfect. Using the same blend each time, some teas are still blended just as they were when Thomas Twining was getting started. Others have had the advantage of being perfected over the course of over 300 years. Herbs and fruits are blended together with Master Blenders ensuring that nothing is pre-packaged or inconsistent with company standards.

English Breakfast Tea

 Where to buy Twinings Tea Bags – in grocery stores everywhere AND online!

Most of us avid tea drinkers are well aware that quality is often sacrificed when choosing tea bags over loose leaf tea, but Twinings boasts the same quality in their tea bags as loose leaf tea, eliminating many of the disadvantages associated with lower quality teas, such as powdery quality.

Perhaps the best part of Twinings are their ethical standards. Twinings shops among 500 tea estates across the globe, and they work with employers and buyers to make sure that all workers are treated ethically. Working with the Ethical Tea Partnership (ETP), labour relations are improved and issues, such as discrimination, reduced. This tea company only purchases from those who work with ETP, and they also purchase Fair Trade and Rainforest Alliance teas.

As the world becomes more aware of genetically modified ingredients, more and more people are choosing diets without them. Twinings, unlike other tea brands, ensures that their teas are all made without genetically modified ingredients. For those with dietary restrictions, you’ll be happy to know this tea company also ensures that no gluten ingredients are present in their teas.

“Ingredients for Twinings tea are selected from all over the world for their finest quality.”

Overall, Twinings is a unique company that helped shape the way we consume tea. The family worked to make sure everyday people could consume the delightful beverage, while simultaneously working to make sure the ingredients and blend were of the highest quality they could produce. Today, they continue to make their mark on the history of tea by ensuring ethical standards among their many plantations, avoiding genetically modified ingredients, and working actively in the community to promote better labor practices. Twinings tea can be found across the globe in hundreds of varieties, yet their 300 year old practices ensure every blend tastes the same in every part of the world.

Source : from Twinings websites across the globe.