Benchmark Oils Ltd was set up by Founder Maggie Tisserand as a vehicle through which to have research conducted into the antimicrobial properties of essential oils.
Research grants and loans enabled a prolonged period of research to take place with the primary focus of seeing which oil/oils would kill or inhibit the growth of MRSA bacteria. Good results were observed with a variety of essential oils but the best results were obtained with certain thyme oils.
The secondary purpose of Benchmark Oils Ltd was to initiate a growing programme to ensure regular supplies of Benchmark Thyme.
Benchmark Thyme has properties similar to many other thymes, but is quite unique. Whereas common thyme has high levels (60% or more) of the phenols thymol and carvacrol, Benchmark Thyme is finely balanced, containing roughly equal proportions of terpenes, alcohols and phenols - which makes it skin-safe. One of the major alcohols is terpinen-4-ol, which is also found in Australian and Chinese Tea Tree oil. It is the terpinen-4-ol in Tea Tree that makes Tea Tree oil so antimicrobial, and in Benchmark Thyme it is the terpinen-4-ol in combination with thymol and linalool that makes for a remarkable oil.
Maggie was one of the first authors on the subject of aromatherapy when Thorsons (Harper Collins) brought out ‘Aromatherapy for Women’ in 1985. The book has sold in excess of 700,000 copies and Maggie has authored or co-authored four other books on the subject of essential oils.
The Japanese publication of ‘Aromatherapy for Women’ was the stepping stone for Maggie and her Japanese agents to introduce aromatherapy to the Japanese market and Maggie was (in 1989) the first speaker on the subject. Maggie has returned many times to Japan lecturing in Kyoto, Osaka and Tokyo.
Aromatherapy has been a passion of Maggie’s since the early 1980s and meeting the growers and distillers of aromatic plants, in many parts of the world, has been a joy and an education, with ‘aromatic travel’ generally taking the place of an annual holiday.
In the early part of the 21st Century Maggie came across internet articles on the emerging problems of SARS and MRSA and began investigating the possibility that essential oils might be what was needed to combat serious infections. Maggie's latest book addresses the problem of MRSA and details some well known essential oils with antimicrobial properties - as well as some lesser known oils.
The Benchmark Team
Founder - Maggie Tisserand
Directors - Antonio Betes