Eichenau  Peppermint Museum

History of peppermint cultivation in Eichenau

The history of peppermint cultivation in Eichenau began in 1918. Adolf Pfaffinger, an official who lived in the small settlement, fetched a rucksack full of roots of the Mitcham mint from the experimental garden of the "Bayrische Landesanstalt fuer Pflanzenbau und Landesschutz" (Weihenstephan).

The medicinal herb grew very well on the Eichenau moor-ground - in 1921 yet on 1,500 square meters. Neighbours copied his work - and mint cultivation grew to be the most important economic factor in the settlement in the Alling moor. By steady improvement of the methods of production and business installations the quality could be improved so much that the "Eichenau commodity" finally was of the highest quality in Germany, with the greatest amount of essential oil. It agreed with the high demands of the German pharmaceutic law and was only produced for the drug- and spice-market, for pharmacies and for the pharmaceutical industry.

The cultivation area of over 400,000 square meters, on which peppermint was produced by 12 professional and about 50 semi-professional workers in 1939 decreased in the fifties because of the beginning of settling-pressure in Eichenau.

In 1956 the drug and spice market was opened for foreign products and cheap imports flooded the market. Increasing wages contributed to the fact that labor intensive peppermint cultivation in Eichenau could no longer cover costs.

Today the peppermint is only cultivated for the museum. The result of the honorary efforts: Original Eichenau peppermint tea.