The history of the London Tea Company
On June 23, 1896, LONDON TEA COMPANY LTD was founded in London by 2 Swiss and 5 Englishmen. The head office was located at 9 + 10 Great Tower Street in London, the successful business soon allowed the opening of branches in BASEL, MUNICH and ST. LOUIS in Alsace.
Headquarters in Basel
On August 6, 1896, the registered office of LONDON TEA was entered in the Commercial Register of Basel-Stadt. As a result of the 1st World War, the Basel branch became an independent company on September 16, 1915, with headquarters at Petersgraben 20. A short time later, the company moved to the corner property Petersgraben 67/Rosshofgasse 8. It was the former administrator's and servant's house of the "ROSSHOF", which now served the LONDON TEA COMPANY LTD as a store, office, packing and storage room. At that time the tea assortment consisted of 12 blends, teas from China, Ceylon and India. Even then, the principle was to import only the best quality tea directly from the plantation. Martha and Hans Iten - direct ancestors of today's owners - contributed with prudence and skill to the prosperity of the house. It is hard to believe in today's technological world how simple and modest the work was back then. The teas were mixed by hand and some of the packages were even made by hand, using home-made paste made from fish meal. After the 2nd World War, when the boom slowly began, many changes took place. With some skepticism, the first tea bags or tea capsules were produced. At first, this was done by hand, with the help of self-designed filling and sealing machines. Only after a few years, when it became clear that the tea bag was an indispensable part of modern times, did the company switch to fully automatic machines.
Move to Münchenstein
A major fire in 1955 at the Nadelberg, which also affected parts of the Rosshof, led to the demolition of the entire Rosshof, with the exception of the manor house. The LONDON TEA store was moved to Spalenberg and the administration, warehouse and shipping department moved into the new building on Reinacherstrasse in Münchenstein near Basel.
Headquarters in Münchenstein
Here, the exclusive and fine teas from all growing regions of the world are stored in a newly built, fully air-conditioned warehouse. Only the best storage and careful handling guarantee the unique aroma of the various teas. Also at the headquarters in Münchenstein, the current family members Marcel and Rosmarie Bisang and their sons Thomas and Matthias Bisang deal with the expert purchasing. Every day, the incoming tea samples from the growing regions are tasted and purchased as needed. All family members enjoyed intensive training as tea testers in London and Hamburg. Their area of responsibility also includes the compilation of the tea blends and the production of the aromatic teas. The owners' expertise is also regularly passed on to interested parties at tea seminars. All our employees in the company, whether on the filling machines, in the packing room or in the store, strive to work with the greatest care and produce the many gift packages with enthusiasm, all in the hope of providing the customers with an unadulterated tea experience.