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10 things you didn’t know about Twinings and tea


It all began in a coffee shop

Twinings was one of the first companies to introduce tea drinking to the English back in 1706, when Thomas Twining started selling tea from his coffee house on London’s Strand. At that time, there were over 2,000 coffee houses in the City of London.

Costly cuppas

Because tea was so expensive in the 18th century, unscrupulous merchants passed off used tea leaves as new tea leaves after steeping them in molasses and sheeps' dung.

Cup of Twinings, anyone?

We’re now the world’s second largest producer of tea, responsible for serving millions of cups daily around the world.

80 years of English Breakfast

One of our best-known teas, English Breakfast, has now been around for over 80 years. The blend, which has changed little over the decades, is a mix of Assam, Ceylon and Kenyan. 

There’s more to us than tea

Our malt and cocoa-based drink Ovaltine (or Ovomaltine) was invented 150 years ago by Dr Albert Wander in Switzerland. It is now marketed in more than 100 countries.

We own some big brands

We’ve got a growing portfolio of beverage brands, including Twinings,  Jacksons of Piccadilly, La Tisanière, Nambarrie, Ovaltine, Ovomaltine,  Caotina, Jarrah and Options.

We’re global

We’ve got offices in more than 15 countries across 5 continents and manufacturing sites in 7 countries.

Quite a few people work for us

Twinings Ovaltine employs almost 2,500 people worldwide.

We’re ethical

In 1997, we were one of the founding partners of the Ethical Tea Partnership. Its mission is to improve the lives of tea workers and their communities, while protecting rural environments. 

We’re in safe hands

We’re part of ABF (Associated British Foods plc), a multi-billion pound food, ingredients and retail group. 

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