Ahmad Tea vs Twinings Tea

twinings everyday tea tag

When you’re choosing a tea brand for your daily cuppa, nighttime brew, or after-dinner fruity number, there are two excellent choices: Ahmad Tea and Twinings. But how do you choose? This is where my Ahmad Tea vs Twinings Tea guide steps in.

At Immortal Wordsmith, I have reviewed near 500 teas in the UK including the main ranges from both Twinings and Ahmad Tea. With international reputations and fans all over the world, both brands have something great to offer.

Let’s kick off this comparison guide with a quick summary then delve into the details.

What You Need to Know

In a nutshell:

  • Ahmad Tea has a limited range of flavours and higher costs than Twinings. However, their tea is a higher quality and they have loyal fans around the world.
  • Twinings is a huge company with a reputation going back 300 years. Their standard teas are a cheaper option and the quality isn’t as great as Ahmad. Where Twinings really shines is their loose leaf teas, extensive variety of flavours, and availability.

Both brands are very similar and directly compete with one another. You’ll find that the same flavour (and similar packaging) is available from both companies. In the UK, only Twinings hits supermarket shelves but globally, both brands are side by side on Amazon and other ecommerce sites.

Importantly, both brands provide mass-produced teas. They both put quantity over quality and have few ethical accreditations. What it really comes down to is personal taste. Give both brands a try and stick with your favourite. There’s no clear winner if you only compare what’s written on paper (or typed on my blog).

ahmad green tea pure tea review

Ahmad Tea London

Ahmad is mass-produced but loved by thousands around the globe. As you’ll find out, their product line is very similar to Twinings. My highest rated Ahmad Teas on the blog are their Mixed Berries and Hibiscus blend and the classic Darjeeling black tea.

History and Reputation

Ahmad Tea was founded in Southampton in 1986 by Rahim Afshar and his brothers, relocating to London as the company grew. This is not a super long history, but it is still notably longer than many modern tea brands (did you know that Teapigs was only founded in 2006?) and it is very British. If you are looking for undeniably British brands, Ahmad Tea checks that box.

As for the reputation, they are considered one of the best brands for mass produced tea. There’s no denying that Ahmad is in the mass-produced aisle – the quality isn’t anything to shout about. However, Ahmad Tea London has many fans. On Reddit, the range of teas is described as “better than average” and “mass produced but still solid.” The quality-cost ratio is also noted as being great.

Origins and Ethics

The tea used for Ahmad is primarily grown in Nanchang, China where the company has had a factory since 2008. The majority of Ahmad Tea (7 million kg per year) is ‘Ceylon’ tea, which simply means it comes from Sri Lanka. This island off India is renowned for tea growing and produces a great cuppa.

Most of Ahmad Tea’s products are packaged in the UAE or Ukraine, while the headquarters remain in the UK. So, there are global operations here.

Regarding ethics, Ahmad Tea is part of the Ethical Tea Partnership but that’s about all there is. You won’t find Fairtrade or Soil Association Organic labels on their products. Don’t forget, Ahmad Tea creates mass-produced tea products – quantity is valued over quality.

Flavour Options and Formats

Ahmad Tea has:

  • Black Teas
  • Green Teas
  • Fruit Teas (combining caffeinated tea with fruit flavours)
  • Fruit and Herbal Infusions (no caffeinated tea, just fruit and herbs)
  • Decaffeinated Tea

As well as these main categories, Ahmad has some cold brew iced teas, a ‘Natural Benefits’ line of infusions, and ‘Galerie du Thé’ offering high quality options.

So, you’ll find all the usual suspects among this range of teas. The cold brew iced teas and ‘Natural Benefits’ are suspiciously similar to the Twinings range – I suspect they were produced to be direct competitors.

90% of the range is in teabag format but you can also find some loose leaf options.

Price

At the time of writing, you’re looking at about £2.50 for 20 teabags or £6 for 100g of loose leaf tea… if you buy directly from Ahmad. Deals are often found on Amazon and there are sales too, especially when a batch of tea is about to pass it’s best before date.

Find Ahmad Tea on Amazon

twinings everyday tea review

Twinings Tea

Twinings is undoubtedly the bigger company… but does that make their teas better? I have been a lifelong fan of Twinings and my highest rated blends from Twinings on the blog include their malty Assam black tea and new Raspberry and Lemon flavour.

History and Reputation

Twinings was introduced in 1706 and has a whole host of impressive historical achievements – the company has occupied the same spot on the Strand for over 300 years and the company logo is the world’s oldest continually used design. But let’s go beyond the Wikipedia page.

The reputation this company has built is impressive. Despite the tea itself being visually identical to other teabag brands in the supermarket (because without doubt, this is a supermarket kind of brand), the Twinings name indicates quality and middleclass poshness. They associate themselves with royalty, Stephen Fry, and the finer things in life.

As I explore in many of my Twinings tea reviews (like Twinings Fennel Infusion), I don’t think this reputation is deserved. Families have been drinking Twinings for generations and that kind of loyalty is hard to break. The quality just isn’t any better than other tea brands and the price is inflated because they know people will pay it without question.

Origins and Ethics

Twinings Tea comes from all over the world. If there’s a country that grows tea, Twinings probably takes a portion of their tea leaves from that location. These tea leaves are then shipped all over the world, blended together, and used for their teabags. Although Twinings do have some single origin teas (Assam, for example), most of them are blended. You rarely find details about the tea leaf origins on the packaging – find out why this matters in my Where Does Tea Come From guide.

Ethics-wise, Twinings has their own ‘A Cup Filled with Care’ program rather than subscribing to a third-party organisation like Fairtrade or Rainforest Alliance. They also have a brief statement about modern slavery and human trafficking on their website, likely in response to the recent industry controversy (but this is pure speculation). Just like Ahmad, quantity is prioritised over quality.

Flavour Options and Formats

Twinings have a vast array of teas to choose from, including classic blends that we have been drinking for centuries!

In addition to the usual range of teas (pretty much the same as Ahmad’s list above), you’ll find seasonal blends, single origin teas, novelty gifts, and so much more. There’s no denying that Twinings have the more expansive range of teas to try. Unfortunately, this does sometimes mean that you’ll fall hard for a delicious tea that is quickly discontinued.

As well as teabags and loose leaf, you also have pyramid-style teabags to choose from. These are favoured by some of the higher quality mass-produced tea brands, as the shape allows you to use broken leaf pieces. The more whole the tea leaves, the higher the quality (in general).

Price

Twinings’ prices are cheaper than Ahmad – around £2.50 will get you 40 teabags if you pick the standard Earl Grey or English Breakfast from their official website. However, where the price really differs when comparing Ahmad Tea vs Twinings, is in the higher-quality lines. Twinings offers fine loose leaf teas in metal caddies, wellness blends, herbal infusions, festive flavours… the prices for these items vary widely.

One other thing to note is that Twinings is more widely available in UK supermarkets. When you look at the shelves, Twinings often appears to be expensive compared to PG Tips, Yorkshire Tea, and supermarket own-brands. This contributes to Twinings’ reputation of being a bit middleclass and posh… but when you go online and compare Twinings to the likes of other good quality mass-produced brands (like Ahmad) it becomes clear that they’re actually quite cheap. It’s all marketing hype and 300 years of becoming a household name.

So, in reality, Twinings is actually quite cheap and delicious. You don’t need to be middleclass to love that!

Shop Twinings Official Website

Why Stop at Ahmad Tea vs Twinings?

Choose Twinings for decent quality and widely varied tea. Choose Ahmad for slightly better quality but less choice. The prices are not that different, but Twinings is definitely cheaper for the classic range.

But why should you stop there?

Ahmad Tea vs Twinings Tea is a very limited comparison. There are hundreds of tea brands in the UK that have so much more to offer. Use the search on our blog to find specific flavours or browse the menu to find a new cuppa. Whether you want value from your teabags or exceptional flavours from loose leaf, I’ve got some recommendations for you!

Isobel Moore

Isobel Moore is a quiet, quirky and creative “human bean” whose favourite pastime is curling up with a cuppa and a good book.

Over the past 5 years, her tea reviews at Immortal Wordsmith have helped thousands of readers choose vibrant tea blends and single origin selections from fine, organic, and responsible tea companies.

As a professional content writer with a qualification in digital marketing, Isobel has worked with market-leading tea brands around the globe to develop their content marketing campaigns and gain exposure. Her professional portfolio can be found on Upwork.

Besides a deep-rooted passion for tea, Isobel writes on topics ranging from food and travel to wellness and literature.

Favourite Quote: “Manuscripts don’t burn” – Mikhail Bulgakov

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