Thompson’s family Tea started in Belfast in 1896. Robert S Thompson soon became known for his uncompromising devotion to quality. In the first few years of the business, tea brands didn’t exist and indeed only began to emerge during the post-war years. In 1900, there were perhaps 25 tea companies in Belfast, selling their wares in beautiful tea chests around the numerous independent grocery shops up and down the country. Today, Thompson’s Family Teas is the only mainstream tea company that remains.