Here at Wriggle we take pleasure in seeking out unique products with that je ne sais quoi to include in our hampers. Our handpicked products come from a wide variety of suppliers, each with their own story to tell and their own way of doing things. We want to share with you what helps make them stand out, because behind every great gift is a great story. We want everybody who receives one of our hampers in the post to feel the essence of that, and understand the significance of each product we’ve included.
In the second Meet the Maker series, we meet Teatulia co-founder and CEO, Ahsan.
Is there a story behind your name, Teatulia?
Teatulia takes its name from the region that the tea is grown in; our organic garden is in Tetulia, northern Bangladesh, nestled at the base of the Himalaya, very near to the border with India.
How did your company start?
Teatulia was founded in 2000, on a small patch of arid scrubland. Over nearly two decades we have transformed the area back into a lush haven for plants and wildlife, using exclusively the Fukuoka Method of low-intensity farming.
What's a fun fact about your product?
We use cow dung to grow our tea! As we’re 100% organic, we use cow manure as a natural fertiliser. However, realising how much manure would be needed to do this, we conceived a cattle-lending scheme, whereby local villagers were loaned cows. The loans are paid off in dung, and the villagers keep all the milk. Our garden is now the biggest employer in one of the poorest areas in the world.
When developing your product, what was important to you?
We are proud of our Bengali heritage and it was really important that this stayed integral to the brand. Our packaging, thought up by the incredible team at Here Design, is inspired by the artwork and calligraphy of the late filmmaker Satyajit Ray. His early work was the touchstone for our signature pattern and bold use of Bengali lettering.
What's a typical day in your business?
While there’s no such thing as a typical day in a startup, we tend to begin the day with an informal team meeting, to catch up and share ideas, over a cup of tea, of course! I also try to touch base with our team in Bangladesh regularly to keep up with any supply developments.
I like to stay involved in the creative process, so I’ll sit in on marketing meetings and sign off on creative calls. Once a month I write the email newsletter ‘note from the founder’ so I’ll make sure this is ready to go. In the afternoons I tend to look over the sales figures and work on strategy. However, I also write, so I try to carve out some time in the week to work on my novel and any articles I’ve had commissioned.
What's the best gift you ever received?
The best gift I ever received was a beautiful, illustrated copy of The Little Prince, which I was given as a child. It remains a favourite story and has inspired me in many ways.
Teatulia teas are featured in our Elevenses Hamper, Tea Party Hamper, Housewarming Hamper, Larder Than Life Hamper and Glad Tidings Hamper.